At some point, most people will suffer from the occasional sleepless night. But what happens when one sleepless night turns into two and two turns into four? Insomnia is a common sleep disorder characterized by difficulty falling asleep and/or staying asleep. Insomnia symptoms range from trouble concentrating to changes in mood.
Symptoms of Insomnia
- difficulty falling asleep at night
- chronic daytime fatigue
- mood swings
- impaired memory retention and focus
- tension headaches
- accidents such as tripping and falling
- inability to fall back asleep once awoken
Causes of Insomnia
What causes insomnia is as varied as the people who suffer from it. This sleep disorder can can stem from both internal and external factors. Depending on the cause and its prevalence in your life, insomnia can be short-term or long-term. Some variables associated with insomnia causes include:
Stress and Anxiety
Worried over that big presentation or balancing your family life? The stress and anxiety of everyday life can cause some to experience temporary or long-term insomnia if left untreated.
Insomnia is often associated with many psychological disorders due, such as depression, as to having a restless mind.
With aging comes change in levels of activity, sleep patterns and overall health - all of which may lead to insomnia.
Women are more likely to experience insomnia than men.
Some medicines such as those used to treat heart disease, high blood pressure, depression and memory loss may induce some form of insomnia.
Alcohol and drug use can inhibit the body from reaching deeper stages of sleep.
Some medical conditions such as asthma, arthritis and Parkinson’s disease may include insomnia as a potential side effect.
Moving into a new house, to a different time zone, and even having a baby can interrupt your usual sleep pattern and cause insomnia.
Poor sleep habits due to irregular work hours, afternoon naps and sleeping in late can disrupt your circadian rhythm preventing you from maintaining a normal sleep pattern.
Foods high in sugar and caffeine can cause insomnia if consumed before bed.