While graveyard shift workers may appreciate insomnia, most of the general population neither welcomes nor appreciates it for obvious reasons. The sleep disorder, after all, makes it more difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep, and/or wake up too early with difficulty in getting back to sleep. The health complications that come with it over time have an adverse impact on the affected person’s quality of life.
Fortunately, insomnia is a treatable condition! Your doctor can discuss a wide range of treatments for your type of insomnia, said treatments of which can include lifestyle changes, sleep therapy, and even medication like Intermezzo. But you will not be immediately put on medication and/or sleep therapy without an in-depth analysis of the causes behind your insomnia.
Root of Insomnia
Emphasis must first be made that insomnia can either be a primary problem or a secondary issue associated with an underlying health condition. In case of the latter, your doctor will treat the underlying condition alongside your symptoms of insomnia. For example, if your insomnia was caused by a stressful life event, then resolving it can ease the symptoms.
The most common causes of insomnia include:
- Physical and/or mental stress, which can include deadlines at work, tight finances, and the death of a loved one
- Changes in daily schedule, usually involving work and/or travelling, such as jet lag, working the early morning or late night shift, and frequently changing work schedules
- Poor sleep habits, such an adopting irregular bedtime schedule, engaging in stimulating activities before bedtime, and getting into a non-conducive sleep environment
- Food consumption late in the evening, which can result in heartburn and indigestion
- Intake of food and drinks that contain stimulants, such as nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol
- Use of certain drugs can also cause insomnia as a side effect
- Presence of an underlying medical condition, such as chronic pain, cancer, heart disease, asthma, Alzheimer’s diseases, Parkinson’s disease, and anxiety disorders, among others
- Sleep-related disorders, such as sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome, can interrupt a good night’s sleep
Your doctor will ask relevant questions about your sleep habits and patterns, as well as your family history and medical history. You may even be asked to undergo tests to determine a possible underlying medical condition.
Relief from Insomnia
When your doctor has a list of the possible causes of your chronic insomnia, your treatment plan can then be made. You may be asked to:
- Change your sleeping habits and certain elements of your sleep environment
- Adopt healthy lifestyle habits
- Change your medications causing your insomnia
- Undergo treatment for your underlying medical condition
There’s no magic bullet for insomnia. But when you work with your doctor in finding the best solution in your case, you can get relief from it!