Are You Suffering from Insomnia?

Poor sleeping patterns could be a bigger issue than just "a bad night's sleep"

Approximately 40% of Canadians will be affected by insomnia at some point in their life

If you’re dealing with irregular sleeping patterns, it might be more than just a bad night’s sleep. You could be dealing with insomnia

Do you have difficulties falling or staying asleep at night? Do you wake up ahead of your alarm clock and stay awake till it’s time to get up? Do you suffer from these symptoms at least three times a week? If yes you may be suffering from insomnia Insomnia is a very common health problem. It affects all segments of the population from children to the elderly.

Approximately 40% of Canadians will be affected by it at some point in their life. It may last a few days, a week or even months. Though it may present itself as a disorder, more often, insomnia might indicate an underlying physical or mental cause.

Diagnosing Insomnia

Diagnosis will be based on your sleep history as well as your clinical symptoms and possibly blood tests. You may be asked to keep a daily sleeping diary to evaluate the cause of your insomnia as well as your progress during treatment.

Once your doctor has determined the cause, an appropriate treatment will be suggested. It might include a regular bedtime routine, avoidance of certain food or drinks at bedtime, relaxation techniques and in some cases medicine.

In any case, the impact of insomnia should not be underestimated. The sooner it is diagnosed, the sooner you can change your sleeping hygiene and habits and avoid long-term consequences.

Causes of Insomnia

Causes may include:

  • Anxiety or depression
  • Medication or drugs
  • Pain from arthritis or other illnesses
  • Nicotine, caffeine or alcohol intake
  • Poor sleeping habits
  • Stress
  • Hypertension, congestive heart failure, diabetes, obesity or other medical conditions
  • Excessive exercise