How To Break The Cycle Of Insomnia
Everyone in their life has found it hard to sleep at night, but insomnia is a very common disorder that can affect mental wellbeing in many ways. Approximately 10-15% of UK adults suffer from chronic insomnia which is often caused by long-term feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression. Insomnia can even have long-lasting impacts at work, affecting your overall productivity while carrying out important tasks.
Fortunately, it has been found that Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is proving successful in helping those who suffer from chronic insomnia to improve their sleep pattern. Research conducted by Queens University in Canada found that participants were able to go to sleep roughly nine to 30 minutes sooner after receiving Cognitive Behavioural Therapy .
How to discuss Insomnia with your employer
- More and more, employers understand how mental wellbeing affects productivity in the workplace, so you shouldnt feel pressured to not talk about Insomnia with your employer if it is affecting your output at work.
- The use of a Mental Health First Aider at work can also be a bridge of communication between you and your employer if you are unsure about how to address Insomnia in the workplace. With a peer-to-peer network of support within your organisation, you can rest assured and feel more comfortable to discuss any issues you may have, including the impact of Insomnia on your overall performance at work.
Here are some simple steps to help cope with Insomnia at home
Confine Your Worries To The Page
After I started writing out 3 pages of stream-of-consciousness worries first thing in the morning, my insomnia disappeared.
You might not realise it consciously but there are probably some mental issues causing your insomnia.
- You might be worried about money.
- You might be worried about your relationships.
- You might be worried about your future or hung up on your past.
The solution is simple.
Write down your thoughts. It might seem silly at first but soon some patterns will emerge. Youll discover whats troubling you, youll trap your concerns on the page, and you might even see some solutions.
If this suggestion works for you, I recommend you check out The Artists Way by Julia Cameron. Thats where I got this idea and many more great suggestions.
Is Taking Naps Good When You Have Insomnia And Want To Feel Rested
You should take naps in the right situation. If you feel really sleep deprived and have to work or drive in a couple hours, then its good to take a nap to feel more alert. But if you have nothing significant to do, avoid napping and use the sleepy feeling to sleep at night. Taking naps during the day will cause you to feel awake at night. So weigh your options.
Tip : Use Medications To Treat Long
Use Supplements or in extreme cases medications to treat long-term insomnia:
If you require a little extra help to get a good nights sleep, consider trying natural sleep-promoting supplements Like Melatonin, a hormone that your body produces naturally that signals yoiur brain that is time to go to sleep. Melatonin supplements like our OhMyVit! Dulces dreamz are your perfect sleeping buddy. 2 Gummies before bed and think haooy thoughts and have the most dulces dreamzzzz.
If your symptoms continue to be consistant and you consider that it is affecting your overall health it is best to see a specialist and determine if medicatios are needed.
I Suffer From Depression Is Depression The Cause Of My Insomnia
Yes, depression can cause insomnia when it is left untreated. When people have depression, they form negative associations with their sleep environment. Instead of feeling relaxed at night, the bedroom is where they feel anxiety, fear, and sadness. To resolve this problem, consult a mental health doctor to treat your depression. If after treatment, your depression is alleviated but sleep problems still exist, consult a sleep specialist.
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Is It Okay To Drink Coffee In The Morning To Wake Up If You Have Insomnia
Coffee can make insomnia worse. Youve got to remember that the effect of caffeine can be long-lasting. The half-life of caffeine is four to seven hours, so it will be in your system for longer than you think, affecting your behavior, your alertness, and your ability to fall asleep. I recommend avoiding all caffeine after noon.
How Back Painrelated Insomnia Affects The Mind And Body
If youve ever had a bout of insomnia, youve probably noticed how it can affect different areas of your life and your overall well-being. When back pain is the culprit for poor sleep, you may notice difficulties with your physical functioning, mood, energy leveland even your outlook. Over time, poor sleep can lead to other health issues, such as lowered immunity and foggy or impaired thinking. Thats why its important to address back pain and insomnia early on before they snowball into more serious health issues.
Its a fact: getting plenty of rest is always important for physical, emotional, and mental well-being. With back pain, its even more important to get good sleep as part of your back health plan. In addition to getting your zzzs, the National Institutes of Health recommends exercise and progressive relaxation to deal with back pain. The Kaia Pain app offers both physical exercises and relaxation practices to help you manage your back pain.
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What Is Transient Insomnia
There are three types of insomnia categorized by duration transient, short-term, and chronic. According to Stanford Healthcare, transient is a temporary form of insufficient rest that lasts for less than one month. Sometimes, experts may also refer to this condition as acute or adjustment insomnia.
Within these durations, there are two additional categories, primary and co-morbid. Primary means the sleep issue exists with no other disease, and co-morbid implies the individual’s condition is present alongside another medical or mental health complication.
However, other health experts have differing qualifications for what constitutes acute insomnia.
For instance, this clinical review presents two classification systems that describe acute sleeplessness with a 3-month duration and a third that lists it within a single month.
Definition Of Chronic Insomnia
Although there are various definitions of chronic insomnia, the most widely accepted is the one that defines it to be a condition characterized by “inadequate quantity or quality of sleep characterized by a subjective report of difficulty with sleep initiation, duration, consolidation, or quality that occurs despite adequate opportunity for sleep, and that results in some form of daytime impairment and has persisted for at least one month”. The causes of this are many, the most important of which are medications, drug or alcohol abuse, psychiatric disorders like depression or anxiety, medical disorders , poor sleep hygiene, and other disorders like sleep apnea, periodic limb movements, conditioned insomnia , restless legs syndrome, circadian rhythm disorder or advanced/delayed sleep-phase syndrome. Neurological causes such as fibromyalgia and Morvan’s syndrome, medical causes such as gastroesophageal reflux disease, and in children, sleep-onset association disorder and limit-setting sleep disorder also need to be identified and addressed since these can commonly present as chronic insomnia.
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Tips & Tricks To Improve Your Sleep
- Exercise regularly, but not within 3 hours of bedtime.
- Avoid using nicotine or consuming alcohol or caffeine after lunchtime.
- Avoid napping.
- Use your bed only for sleep. Avoid using it to do your schoolwork, watch movies, or eat.
- Try to ensure you arent too hungry or full.
- Avoid discussing emotional or upsetting issues.
- Avoid stimulating activities, like watching an interesting movie or playing video games.
- Take a warm shower or bath before bed. This can help you de-stress and fall asleep faster.
- Follow a bedtime routine. Incorporate stress-reducing strategies like mindfulness meditation, deep breathing and progressive muscle relaxation.
Optimize Your Bedroom for Sleep
- Create a calming bedroom environment by removing any object associated with ongoing stress.
- Make sure your bedroom is dark, quiet and a comfortable temperature.
Set Your Internal Clock
- Go to sleep at the same time every night, including weekends.
- Wake up at the same time each morning, even on weekends.
- Expose yourself to bright light right after you wake up. Go outside, open the blinds or turn on the lights to help your sleep clock function properly.
Talk To Your Physician
Difficulty sleeping may stem from an underlying medical condition, such as obstructive sleep apnea. Restless leg syndrome and bruxism can also interfere with sleep. These medical issues may cause sleep problems that worsen or cause depression.
Its important to talk to your physician about any sleep problems or depressive symptoms youre experiencing. Your physician can assess whether you have underlying health issues contributing to your conditions.
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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy For Insomnia
Up till now, the efficacy of positive thinking was being tapped to turn no-hopers into go-getters. But of late, insomniacs and individuals beset with a range of sleeping disorders are being inculcated to gradually adopt a positive mindset. Nearly 10% of the adult US population has to put with multiple symptoms associated with sleeplessness such as difficulty falling asleep at night, waking up in the night, daytime fatigue and irritability, restlessness, and so on.
Recently, many medical institutions and sleep medicine experts are backing a new kid on the block in the world of insomnia CBT-I or Cognitive Behavior Therapy for insomnia. The treatment process lays stress on sleep hygiene like going to bed and getting up at the same hour daily, refraining from oversleeping or staying in bed etc. However, the key attributes of CBT-I are stimulation control and sleep restrictions.
In other words, you should quit damaging habits like taking excessive coffee or alcohol, watching TV or browsing on the smartphone before going to bed, and cultivate good sleeping habits. Fixing an appointment with a CBT-I clinician could be an issue as there are only about 10,000 of these medics practicing in the U.S. when the demand is for 100,000 professionals. But there are many effective online therapy solutions, so dont fret.
Lying at the core of the CBT-I are five essential aspects:
The Back Paininsomnia Cycle
Many people with back pain struggle to get a proper nights sleep. Whats more, insomnia doesnt discriminate when it comes to the type of back pain you have. In other words, sleep can suffer with short-term or long-term back pain. So whether your back pain makes a brief appearance or long overstays its welcome, you might find yourself tossing and turning at night.
As we mentioned at the beginning, back pain and poor sleep are closely related, with each contributing to the other. Back pain can cause insomnia, and insomnia, in turn, can actually make back pain worse. This feedback loop is otherwise known as the Back PainInsomnia Cycle.
In addition to the obvious discomfort, here are some other reasons why back pain can keep you up at night:
- When you lie in a darkened bedroom at night without daytime distractions, your mind tends to tune in to pain more
- People with chronic back pain may have more frequent, intense periods of lighter-stage sleep. This can lead to waking up more often during the night.
- Inflammation can also contribute to poor sleep
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What Are The Causes Of Insomnia During Pregnancy
Multiple factors can cause insomnia during pregnancy:
- Discomfort: Increased weight and changed body composition can affect positioning and comfort in bed.
- Disrupted Breathing: Growth of the uterus places pressure on the lungs, creating potential for breathing problems during sleep. Hormonal changes can increase snoring and the risk of central sleep apnea, which involves brief lapses in breath.
- Reflux: Slower digestion can prompt disruptive gastroesophageal reflux in the evening.
- Nocturia: Greater urinary frequency can create the need to get out of bed to go to the bathroom.
- Restless Leg Syndrome: The exact cause is unknown, but pregnant women have a greater risk of RLS even if they have never had symptoms before becoming pregnant.
Studies have found that more than half of pregnant women report sleeping problems consistent with insomnia. In the first trimester, pregnant women frequently sleep more total hours, but the quality of their sleep decreases. After the first trimester, total sleep time decreases, with the most significant sleeping problems occurring during the third trimester.
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Onset Ontogeny And Clinical Course
As indicated earlier, no work has been undertaken to assess in specific the natural history of psychophysiological insomnia. It is presumed to have an insidious or acute onset , an adult onset , or a chronic and unremitting course where illness severity is thought to intensify with time. Interestingly, while it is thought to be chronic and unremitting, insomnia is not thought to necessarily occur each night. Most research studies tacitly acknowledge this night-to-night variability by using eligibility criteria that stipulate that the insomnia must occur with a frequency of three or more nights per week.
A. Galion, J.L. Martin, in, 2013
Behavioural And Cognitive Therapies
If you have severe persistent poor sleep, your doctor may refer you to a psychologist or other health professional for psychological treatments. These are various therapies which help re-train your brain and the way you feel, think or behave. Research studies have found that there is a good chance that behavioural and cognitive therapies will improve sleep in adults with insomnia. Increasingly, research has also shown that some of these therapies can be delivered digitally .
There are various types of therapy and they include the following:
Stimulus-control therapy. This helps you to re-associate the bed and bedroom with sleep and to re-establish a consistent sleep/wake pattern.
Sleep restriction therapy. Very briefly, the principle of this treatment is that you limit the time that you spend in bed at night. As things improve, the time in bed is then lengthened. An example of the way that this may be done in practice is as follows:
Relaxation training. This teaches you ways of reducing tension. For example, this may include the progressive muscle relaxation technique as described earlier, plus various other techniques described earlier.
Paradoxical intention. This involves staying passively awake, avoiding any intention to fall asleep. It is used for people who have trouble getting to sleep .
Cognitive therapy. Cognitive therapy is often used in combination with a behavioural intervention this is then called cognitive behavioural therapy .
How Can Insomnia Be Treated
The treatment of insomnia first calls for a thorough assessment by a healthcare professional. The use of prescription medication must always be considered as a last resort. Every effort is made to prescribe the smallest effective dose for the shortest period of time possible. This is because prescription medication that is used to treat insomnia can be habit forming.
Some over-the-counter remedies are also available, such as those containing diphenhydramine. These products must be used only to treat occasional bouts of insomnia and not for an extended period of time. Natural products can be an interesting option. Always speak to your pharmacist before using any over-the-counter sleep aid, since some products may not be suitable for you.
Certain non-medicated treatments can also improve the quality of your sleep. Relaxation, meditation, biofeedback, acupuncture, and yoga are all examples of methods that can help you to sleep better.
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Prescription And Otc Sleep Aids Can Help But They Are Meant To Be Short
Before turning to medication, your doctor should rule out other possible health issues. Insomnia oftentimes is a side effect of an underlying issue, such as depression or an anxiety disorder, in which case an antidepressant could be more beneficial than a sleep aid. If theres something else going on, that issue should be addressed versus putting a Band-Aid on the problem with sleep medication, Aouad says.
If you try sleep hygiene and cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia, and youre not seeing the benefit, I would say see a specialist so they can rule out any other possible medical or mental health issues that could be contributing to the insomnia and help direct you to treatment, Aouad says.
In these cases, over-the-counter or prescription sleep medication can be helpful if used for a short period of time, as you simultaneously establish a healthier sleep routine by improving your sleep hygiene and forming habits that allow you to get the sleep you need. The ideal scenario is that you once you do get into a better sleep routine, you can stop taking the medication, but continue to sleep well.
If medication is prescribed, take it for as little time as necessary since it can be habit forming, Aouad says three months at maximum. And be sure to discuss the medications purpose and side effects with your doctor.
Types of prescription sleep aids include:
Neil B Kavey Director The Sleep Disorders Center At Columbia University Medical
Could stress be behind insomnia or are there other causes as well?
You can try to find the cause yourself by attempting to recall the period when you first experienced a bout of sleeplessness. Is your insomnia fleeting, i.e. does it aggravate when you feel stressed and ebbs with its disappearance or is it chronic having persisted from/since a long time ago? At the same time, question yourself as to what stresses you out-is it your job or family issues.
If you find it difficult to unwind and relax towards the end of the day, it could be that youre suffering from depression which also could be behind your insomnia.
How do I deal with my sleeplessness?
Regardless of what is causing your insomnia, strictly follow a disciplined lifestyle. For instance, start with having a fixed bedtime and wakeup time. If youre planning to sleep for the mandatory 8 hours but having to make do with only 6, then try to increase the duration by quarter of an hour every weekend.
Do not work on the computer, watch TV or talk on the phone for long periods 1-2 hours before going to bed. Do not take a heavy dinner and see to it that you have it at least 2 hours before bedtime. Make the bedroom aesthetically appealing, keep the area free from clutter, and do not accept or make calls from this space.
Is it safe to take OTC pills and tablets?
How to figure out that I need to consult a specialist?
One essential attribute of insomnia that I need to be aware of?
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