Insomnia disorder: Defination, Diagnosis & Treatment

Insomnia disorder
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Insomnia Disorder

It is a condition in which a person has trouble during sleeping. Everyone has trouble during sleeping every once in a while. But for people with insomnia , sleep problems happen at least 3 nights each week for at least 3 months. People with insomnia have trouble falling asleep or
staying asleep. You may:

  • Have Lay awake for a long time period before falling asleep.
  • Stay awake for most of the night.
  • Wake up often and have trouble getting back to sleep.
  • Wake up too early in the morning.

Sleep problems from insomnia also cause other problems during the day. You may:

  • Feel tired or sleepy during the day.
  • Not have enough energy.
  • Feel irritable, anxious, or depressed.
  • Worry about not being able to sleep.
  • Forget things often.
  • Have trouble concentrating.

Insomnia disorder can affect your daily life. It can affect your job and personal relationships. Feeling tired or sleepy can also increase your risk of having a car accident or injuring yourself. Insomnia disorder may also ↑se  risk for heart disease. Many things can trigger insomnia, including:

  • Stress, anxiety, or worry
  • Too much caffeine, alcohol, or tobacco.
  • Poor sleep habits, such as not keeping a regular bedtime and looking at bright screens (your computer, TV, phone, or tablet) right before bed.
  • Changes in the times that you work (for example, shift work) and sleep.

Once the triggers go away, the insomnia may continue and lead to insomnia disorder. This may happen because of habits you formed. Or, it may happen because of changes in the ways you think or feel about sleep (such as worrying about sleep or dreading to go to bed). It can also sometimes happen on its own with no known cause.

How is insomnia disorder diagnosed?

Health professional will talk with you about your sleep problems and how long they have lasted. He or she may also talk with you about your
sleep habits (such as the time you go to bed, the time you wake up, and how long you sleep). Your health care professional may ask you to keep a daily log of your sleep for 1 to 2 weeks. Your health care professional may also ask you:

  • What you usually do before going to bed.
  • What medicines you take.
  • If you snore.
  • If there is something in your life causing you to feel stressed or upset.
  • How much caffeine you have each day.
  • How often you drink alcohol.
  • If you smoke.
  • If you exercise regularly.
  • If you have any chronic pain.

How is insomnia disorder treated?

Your health care professional will talk with you about what you can do to help improve your sleep. Your health care professional may suggest that you:

  • Avoid caffeine late in the day.
  • Avoid naps.
  • Avoid alcohol, tobacco, large meals, and exercise within 2 hours of going to bed.
  • Make sure your bedroom provides a good environment for sleep.
  • Avoid looking at bright screens (such as a TV, computer, phone, or tablet) close to bedtime.
  • Leave the bedroom if you are not able to sleep.
  • Stick to a regular sleep schedule.
  • Do not hit the snooze button on your alarm.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia.

The treatment your health professional will likely suggest is cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I). For CBT-I, you may meet with a therapist in person. Or, you can use an online CBT-I program. The goal of CBT-I is to change your behaviors and thoughts to help you sleep. CBT-I helps you start to praise the bed and bedroom with positive thoughts of sleep. To do this, you should try to only get in bed when you are sleepy. You should also only sleep in the bedroom. Avoid doing other things in bed (such as reading, using your computer, or looking at your cell phone or tablet).

A CBT-I therapist may recommend that you get out of bed and leave the bedroom if you are not able to sleep. You can slowly start spending more time in bed as your sleep improves. CBT-I also helps you change the way you think about sleep. For example, CBT-I may help you recognize negative thoughts you have about sleep and replace them with positive thoughts. It may also help you learn how to better control your thoughts at bedtime or if you wake up in the night. You may learn ways to relax your muscles to help reduce tension and control your thoughts.


health professional can suggest a medicine for your insomnia disorder in the short term. There are some types of medicines for insomnia disorder. But, these medicines are only meant to be taken for atleast short periods of time (4 weeks to 3 months). Eszopiclone , zolpidem , and zaleplon are a type of medicine called non-benzodiazepine hypnotics. These medicines affect the brain and cause you to feel sleepy.

  • Suvorexant is an orexin receptor antagonist.
  • Medicine blocks are orexin, a chemical in the brain that causes wakefulness.
  • Ramelteon (Rozerem®) is a melatonin agonist. This medicine affects the level of melatonin, a chemical in the brain needed for sleep.
  • Doxepin (Silenor®) is an antidepressant. This medicine changes  the amounts of certain chemicals in the brain. It was made to treat depression, but it has been proved to treat insomnia disorder.
  • Temazepam (Restoril®) is a benzodiazepine hypnotic.

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