Insomnia is a symptom, not a disease. It means you are concerned about how much you sleep have or how well you sleep.
This may be caused by difficulties in either falling or staying asleep.
Self-reported sleeping problems, dissatisfaction with sleep quality and daytime tiredness are the only defining characteristics of insomnia.
It is an individual's perception of sleep. Long-term chronic insomnia needs professional support from a sleep disorder clinic.
Refreshing sleep is important for our health and wellbeing.
Poor sleep can lead to drowsiness, poor concentration and other symptoms that interfere with daytime activities. The best way to treat sleeping problems is to find and manage the cause. The amount of sleep we need depends on our age, lifestyle, personality and circumstances. Many people find that their sleeping patterns change as they get older. Most adults need 7–8 hours of sleep per
night, teenagers need about 9.5 hours of sleep per night and infants need about 16 hours of sleep per day.
Sleep problems affect quality of sleep, amount of sleep or sleep behaviour including:
insomnia –having a problem falling asleep or staying asleep, or not feeling refreshed by sleep. It is very common and may be a symptom of another condition
obstructive sleep apnoea –a condition that causes a person to stop breathing for short periods while sleeping
restless legs syndrome –a condition that causes an urge to move the legs when lying down
Home remedies for short-term insomnia
Reducing anxiety and sticking to a day–night routine can improve sleep quality. Suggestions include:
* Don’t nap during the day.
* Cut down on smoking and drinking.
* Avoid tea, coffee and other caffeinated drinks before bed.
* Don’t exercise strenuously before bedtime.
* Do something to relax, such as meditate or have a warm bath.
* Only go to bed if you feel sleepy.
Insomnia is a symptom, not a disease. The cause (or causes) of insomnia needs to be identified and
corrected. Insomnia means having trouble with how well or how much you sleep.
* People keep themselves awake by worrying about going to sleep.
Long-term chronic insomnia needs professional support and a lot of patience.
Treatment for long-term insomnia
Insomnia that has persisted for years needs professional support and a lot of patience. It might take some time to
re-establish normal sleeping patterns.
Some of the techniques used by a sleep disorder clinic might include:
* A sleep diary, to help pinpoint the pattern of insomnia
* A program of mild sleep deprivation
* Medication to help set up a new sleeping routine
* Exposure to bright light in the morning
* Behavioural therapy.