What is insomnia? What are sleep disorders?
Insomnia is a reoccurring inability to get sufficient deep and satisfying sleep. It can take many forms. Some people find it hard to fall asleep. Other find it hard to stay asleep or to go back to sleep after having gotten up during the night. Most people who suffer from insomnia don't feel fresh when they get up, and this affects their ability to function properly during the day.
Some people need less sleep than others. But most people need seven to eight hours a night. One way to test if you are getting enough sleep is to remove any stimulants (e.g. coffee) and to check if you still feel energetic and awake during the day.
What is insomnia? What causes sleep disorders?
Sometimes insomnia can be as a result of another medical condition or a side effect of a medication. If these causes are not factors, then it could be due to factors such as:>
- Changes in your schedule or environment (e.g. travel or working night shift can disrupt your circadian rhythms and sleep cycle)
- Poor sleep routines (e.g. trying to sleep at irregular hours, exposing yourself to too much stimulation before bed, an uncomfortable bed or too warm a room or associating your bedroom with work rather than sleep if you tend to use it as an office)
- Eating too or too soon before bed, making it hard to sleep because your body is working on digestion. Some also experience heartburn and acidity which can make it hard to sleep.
- Using stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol, nicotine or other drugs. Many people mistakenly think that drinking alcohol will help them sleep, but they aren't aware that it also prevents them from experiencing the deeper stages of sleep and can sometimes lead to waking up during the night.
Disclaimer: The statements made on this page have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They are not intended to diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. If a condition persists, please contact your physician or healthcare provider. The information provided is not a substitute for a face-to-face consultation with a healthcare provider, and should not be construed as medical advice.