Insomnia is said to be a civilization disease. Symptoms of insomnia in medical interviews occur in 30-50% of surveyed adults.
From the point of view of somnologists, insomnia is a problem with falling asleep or poor sleep at least three times a week. That is, three times a week you can not sleep for a long time, interfere with thoughts about the past day. You wake up in the middle of the night and twist and turn for a long time, again because of the endless scrolling in your head of the details of the conflict with the boss or a quarrel with the family. Or, on the contrary, you fall asleep quickly, sleep well, but wake up long before the alarm and continue to sleep in one eye. All these are signs of insomnia.
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What is “insomnia”?
Insomnia means many symptoms that can occur at different times and intensities. These can be difficulty in falling asleep, usually defined as lengthening the time of falling asleep over 45 minutes. These can also be problems in maintaining sleep, manifested by frequent waking up during the night or too early waking up in the morning. It can also be a poor quality sleep that does not give you the proper sense of rest and regeneration. Sleep disturbances may be felt for a short or long time, with varying frequency and may affect their comfort of living in various ways. If the sleep disorders found by patients do not allow them to function properly during the day, they last over a month and occur three times a week or more often, then they meet the diagnostic criteria of insomnia. Insomnia usually leads to drowsiness during the day and general malaise, both mental and physical. Mood swings, irritability and anxiety are common symptoms.
Causes of insomnia
Insomnia can be caused by physical and psychological factors. Medical classifications of insomnia types with regard to its origin are quite extensive. There is primary insomnia, i.e. spontaneous and secondary, which accompanies other diseases. Another division speaks of organic insomnia, i.e. related to diseases of the nervous or somatic system and inorganic insomnia. However, from the point of view of quality of life and the possibility of effective treatment, it seems more important to break down insomnia due to the duration of its symptoms. Insomnia insomnia, meaning lasting up to a few days and short-term insomnia – lasting less than a month, is most often caused by stress, change of lifestyle, disruption of the circadian rhythm. It can also be the result of a short-term illness such as infections or pains of various origins.
Chronic insomnia, lasting over 4 weeks, is most often associated with:
• mental disorders (anxiety disorders, neurosis, depression, bipolar disorder)
• chronic diseases and disorders (such as chronic inflammation, chronic pain syndromes, endocrine disorders, neurological diseases or preventing physical activity, congestive heart failure, coronary heart disease, reflux disease (GERD), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, apnea sleepy, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease)
• drug abuse
• addictions (alcohol, caffeine, other stimulants)
• electronics in the bedroom (exposure to blue light emitted by screens of laptops, smartphones at bedtime, diodes of electronic equipment in the bedroom)
• failure to observe the so-called “Sleep hygiene”
Symptoms of insomnia
1. Complaints of difficulty falling asleep, poor quality of sleep
2. Sleep disturbance at least 3 times a week during a month
3. Concern about sleep disorder and its effects
4. Severe discomfort or decline in social functions or performance as a result of unsatisfactory duration and quality of sleep.
The manifestations of insomnia include frequent nocturnal awakenings, after which it is impossible to fall asleep for a long time, as well as a feeling of “superficial” sleep; daytime sleepiness
Ways for insomnia
Some types of insomnia disappear when the underlying cause is treated or spontaneously disappears (eg, reduction of stress or regulation of lifestyle). So the first step in treating insomnia should be to try to determine the cause. However, regardless of the cause, the basic form of insomnia treatment is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). It allows you to change behaviors and habits leading to insomnia. It is indicated above all in the treatment of primary insomnia, but also in cases of secondary insomnia, that is coexisting with other diseases. The most important thing in the treatment of insomnia is to create new habits consistent with the principles of “sleep hygiene” and to follow them consistently.
Treatment of insomnia by pharmacy
In addition to behavioral interventions and relaxation training, pharmacological treatments for insomnia are also available that effectively and quickly deal with this problem.
When treating insomnia, an integrated approach is used. It includes the elimination of the factors that caused insomnia, as well as measures to normalize sleep.
Medicinal herbs and medications that affect the structure of sleep, and well-proven among patients with insomnia, are referred to drug treatment:
1) Unisom: a quality drug in the fight against insomnia, the active component of which has a pronounced sedative and hypnotic effect.
2) Sominex: taken for the prevention and treatment of insomnia. In addition, the drug is used to relieve redness, irritation, itching, swollen eyes; sneezing; and rhinitis caused by hay fever, allergies or a cold.
3) L-tryptophan: a well-known amino acid that promotes the synthesis of melatonin and NIGHT helps with insomnia – allows you to sleep, relax, provides deep, full sleep, helps to fall asleep faster. And HAPPY contributes to the synthesis of seratanin – reduces emotional tension, fear, anxiety, increases efficiency, provides an elevated mood.
In more detail HOW L-tryptophan copes with insomnia and depression.
Complications due to insomnia
The consequences of a lack or poor quality of sleep are: Decreased performance; Slowing down the reaction; Appearance of mental problems; Immunity disorders; Increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
Prevention of insomnia
To prevent insomnia, try to lie down and get up at the same time, to observe the biological rhythm that is natural for the human body. Healthy eating also contributes to healthy sleep. In addition, you should not go to bed irritated, eat heavy food, tonic drinks and alcohol before bedtime. It is recommended to go in for sports, but avoid intense exertion at bedtime. Create a comfortable environment in the bedroom.