According to the American Psychiatric Association, insomnia is a condition in which people have difficulty falling asleep, difficulty staying asleep, and/or are waking up too early in the morning. As the most common sleep disorder, insomnia is diagnosed to individuals who experience poor sleep quality or quantity that causes distress or impairment in important areas of functioning.
Insomnia is common, affecting 30% of the U.S. adult population suffer, with an additional 10% suffering from chronic insomnia. Furthermore, an estimated 10 million people in the United States remain undiagnosed.
What is Insomnia?
Insomnia is defined as difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep even when the person has the chance to do so.
Acute insomnia is short-term and lasts from 1 night to a few weeks. Chronic insomnia is long-term and is defined as insomnia symptoms occurring least 3 nights a week for 3 months or more.
Sleepiness during the day, fatigue, grumpiness, problems with concentration or memory, trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, waking up too early and not being able to fall back asleep, waking up not feeling rested.
Types of Insomnia
There are two different types of insomnia, depending on its origin:
Primary insomnia: sleep problems that aren’t linked to any other health condition/problem
Secondary insomnia: trouble sleeping because of a health condition (asthma, depression, arthritis, cancer, heartburn, pain, medication, substance use (i.e. alcohol)
Causes of primary/secondary insomnia:
Primary: stress, noise/light/temperature, changes to sleep schedule/jet lag
Secondary: mental health issues, medications for different conditions (colds), pain/discomfort at night, hyperthyroidism, sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome, caffeine/tobacco/alcohol use
- Insomnia. National Sleep Foundation
- Insomnia. MedlinePlus. Updated Nov 1, 2019.
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SPEAK TO YOUR DOCTOR IF INSOMNIA MAY INTERFERE WITH YOUR LIFE.