A common sleep issue known as insomnia can make it difficult to get asleep, and keep asleep, or lead you to wake up too early and have trouble falling back asleep. When you wake up, you could still feel worn out. Your health, productivity at work, and quality of life can all be negatively impacted by insomnia in addition to your energy state and mood.
There are many different medical and psychological causes of insomnia. Frequently, a transient issue, such as transient stress, is the root reason. In certain other cases, an underlying medical problem is the cause of the sleeplessness.
Common causes of chronic insomnia include:
Your mind may remain active at night due to worries about your family, job, health, finances, or other factors, making it difficult to fall asleep. Insomnia can also be brought on by traumatic or stressful life events like divorce, losing your job, or losing a loved one to death or disease.
- Travel or work schedule.
Circadian rhythms serve as an internal clock for your body, controlling functions including metabolism, body temperature, and sleep-wake cycles. Insomnia can result from a disruption of your body’s biological rhythms. Jet lag brought on by crossing time frames, working a morning or afternoon shift, or switching shifts regularly are some of the causes.
- Poor sleep habits.
An erratic bedtime routine, naps, stimulating activities right before bed, an uncomfortable sleeping environment, and using your bed for work, eating, or watching TV are all examples of poor sleep habits. Your sleep cycle might be disrupted by using computers, TVs, video games, smartphones, or other devices right before bed.
- Eating too much late in the evening.
A small snack before bed is acceptable, but if you consume too much, you can feel incredibly uncomfortable when you lie down. Heartburn, or the reflux of acid and food into the esophagus after eating, is another common condition that might keep you awake.
- Mental health disorders
Your sleep may be disturbed by anxiety and depression, including post-traumatic clinical depression. An early awakening could indicate depression. Along with other mental health conditions, insomnia is frequently present.
Numerous prescription drugs, including some antidepressants and treatments for asthma or high blood pressure, can disrupt sleep. Numerous over-the-counter drugs, including some pain relievers, allergy and cold remedies, and weight-loss medicines, include caffeine and other accelerators that might interfere with sleep.
- Caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol
Stimulants include caffeinated beverages like coffee, tea, cola, and others. If you consume them in the late afternoon or evening, you can have trouble going to sleep at night. Another stimulant that might disrupt sleep is nicotine, which is present in tobacco products. Alcohol may aid in your ability to fall asleep, but it prevents deeper sleep and frequently results in nighttime awakenings.
- Changes in sleep patterns
As you become older, sleep often becomes less restful, increasing the likelihood that sound or other environmental changes will wake you up. As you get older, your internal clock tends to advance, which causes you to fall asleep earlier and wake up earlier. However, in general, elderly individuals still require the same amount of sleep like young adults.
- Everybody occasionally has a difficult time getting to sleep. However, if you have a history of:
- You’re a woman. Changes in hormone levels during menstruation and during menopause could be a factor. Sleep disturbance and excessive sweating are common menopause sleep disturbances. Another typical symptom of pregnancy is insomnia.
- You’re over age 60. Age-related changes in health and sleep habits contribute to a rise in insomnia.
- You suffer from a physical or mental health issue. Numerous conditions that affect your mental or physical health can interfere with your sleep.
- You are quite stressed out. Events and situations that are stressful can lead to brief sleeplessness. Additionally, persistent or significant stress can cause chronic sleeplessness.
- You don’t follow a set timetable. Your sleep-wake cycle may be disturbed by, for instance, working different shifts or traveling.
Sleep is just as crucial to your health as a balanced diet and frequent exercise. Whatever the cause, insomnia can have a negative impact on your mental and physical health. When compared to those who are getting enough sleep, those who suffer from insomnia report a lower quality of life.
Insomnia’s potential side effects include:
- Decreased efficiency at work or in the classroom
- A slower ability to respond when driving and a greater chance of accidents
- Diseases of the mind, such as substance misuse, anxiety disorders, or sadness
- Long-term diseases or disorders like high blood pressure or heart disease are more likely to occur and to get worse.