by Doyinsola Adeyemi
Do you have issues sleeping no matter how tired you are? It might be due to a sleep disorder that is characterized by difficulty in falling and/or staying asleep called INSOMNIA. Insomnia is the inability to fall asleep or stay asleep at night, which results in an unrefreshing or non-restorative sleep. It is a very common problem, one that rips you off your energy, mood, and ability to function during the day.
Sleep is very important to one’s health and wellbeing, and different people need different amounts of sleep to stay active. Insomnia is often determined by the quality of your sleep and how you feel after sleeping, and not necessarily how long you sleep or how quickly you doze off. If you sleep for eight hours a night and still feel drowsy and fatigued during the day, you may be experiencing insomnia.
Although insomnia is the most common sleep complaint, it could be as a symptom of another problem. The problem causing insomnia differs from person to person. It could be something as simple as drinking too much caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol. Caffeine and nicotine in tobacco products, when taken within several hours of going to bed, can disrupt one’s sleep. Alcohol may make it easier to fall asleep at first, but it can cause you to wake up too early and not be able to fall back asleep. It could also be as a result of a more complex issue like an underlying medical condition, anxiety or depression.
The good news is that most cases of insomnia can be cured with changes you can make on your own by addressing the underlying causes and making simple changes to your daily habits and sleep environment, exercising daily, not forcing sleep, maintaining a regular sleep schedule. Avoid taking caffeine at night, especially if you notice sleeplessness after taking it. Avoid going to bed hungry, and ensure a comfortable sleeping environment.
Chronic cases of insomnia can be treated by first treating any underlying conditions or health problems that are causing insomnia. If the case continues, your health care provider may suggest behavioural therapy. Behavioural therapy helps you to change behaviours that may worsen insomnia and to learn new behaviours to promote sleep. Techniques such as relaxation exercises, sleep restriction therapy, and reconditioning may be useful.
Sleep, like nutrition and physical activity, plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout your life. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times can help protect your mental health, physical health and quality of life. Therefore, make sure you get good and enough sleep as often as you can and at all costs.