There is a wide range of causes of insomnia. Some specific conditions appear to make individuals more likely to suffer from some variant of insomnia. These include:
Chronic insomnia is a more complex disorder that can be caused by a combination of underlying physical and mental problems. Depression is a frequent cause of chronic insomnia. The condition can also be brought on as a side effect of physical conditions such as arthritis, asthma, heart failure, kidney disease, sleep apnea, and narcolepsy.
Behavioral factors include the overuse of alcohol, caffeine, or other stimulants. Disrupted or uneven sleep cycles, such as changing work hours, napping during the day. Sometimes merely altering these behavior patterns can cure prolonged periods of insomnia. The inverse is also true – chronic insomnia can be brought on by said behaviors.
Insomnia is a sleep disorder. It causes difficulty in falling asleep. People with insomnia have trouble staying asleep as well. Insomnia wakes a person very early, in the mornings. After a night’s sleep, the affected people wake up feeling tired. A consistent pattern in sleeping is more important than the hours of sleep. Usually, people need, seven to nine hours of quality sleep to feel refreshed, the next day. But for some, four or five hours are enough. To get the required hours of sleep, it is necessary to spend more time in bed, as it takes time to go to sleep. This time lag is termed as the sleep latency period. It is not part of the total sleep.
Stress is mainly an emotional as well as physical strain caused by many outside pressures. It occurs due to difficulty in coping with many experiences. Stress causes the inability to concentrate, trouble in sleeping, irritability, faster heartbeat, sweaty palms, dry mouth, difficulty in breathing, pounding heart, stomach upset, tightening of muscles resulting in trembling, pain, and headache.
Insomnia is usually caused by stress. Stress destroys the homeostatic balance, affecting the peak potential. It can cause several psychological and physical effects like depression, headache, accidents, impaired mental functions, and even heart attack. Stress releases two hormones from adrenal glands: cortisol and epinephrine. These hormones affect digestion and growth, as the fundamental balance is whacked. Processes not necessary for short-term survival are affected, as the two hormones withdraw energy from them. They channel the extra energy for boosting blood supply and muscles, for precipitating quick actions. The excitatory stress hormones make people excited, leading to the inability to sleep and disruption of sleep.
Snoozing is a natural process where the metabolic rate and heartbeat lowers, postural muscles relax, blood pressure falls and breathing becomes normal. It is the cyclical fall as well as the rise of cortisol levels that monitor the level of sleep. Cortisol levels can affect day-to-day life. While falling into sleep results in a gradual cessation of the action phenomenon, stress induces action. Conditions of sleeping and stress are two antagonistic processes and hence cause havoc. Chronic secretion of cortisol due to stress leads to excessive activation, not only during waking hours but also while sleeping. Hence sleep becomes restless, fragmented, and shallow, causing insomnia.
Insomnia can never be defined through the amount of sleep that you have on a daily basis. The period of sleeping might vary with different individuals. There are many individuals requiring 7 – 8 hours of sleep regularly for making a refreshing start to a day whereas there are others, who require an amount that is either less or more than that. Everyone has a standard time span of sleeping. When this standard receives a continuous setback, then the individual is said to be living with insomnia.
Most individuals, who are living with insomnia, are primarily responsible for their own condition. They maintain such an environment around themselves that they become habituated to either lack of sleeping or oversleeping. Let us look at some manmade causes that lead to insomnia:
Stress can be considered as a friend, which never leaves us, even if we plan to go asleep. Stress from our personal and professional life is sometimes too much for allowing us to have normal sleep. Most individuals have sleepless nights due to continuous mental stress. Eventually, you are bound to get affected by insomnia.
You can always avoid such a situation by engaging yourself in other activities before you go to sleep. After a mentally and physically stressful day, you can opt for playing games, talking with friends, making lists of tasks to perform on the next day, or opting to ignore the proceedings of the day. Such engagements leave you with a refreshed mental state before going to sleep.
Irregularity in your eating and drinking habits might end you up in living with insomnia. Nowadays, most individuals are in a habit of drinking caffeine or alcohol and smoking cigarettes before their bedtime. These are stimulants to our nervous systems and eventually lead to acquiring an undesired excitement.
Again, there are individuals, who are in a habit of eating before bedtime. Such eating habits lead to improper digestion, which eventually causes disturbances in your sleep.
The only solution here is that you can start maintaining routine eating and drinking habit.
There are numerous individuals, especially students, having a habit of sleeping at the irregular times of the day. It is seen that most of these individuals sleep during the afternoon or the evening period. They compensate the time lost in the day by utilizing a similar period during the night. Most physicians feel that night sleep is more relaxing and compulsory for having a refreshing start. If individuals do not cover their normal span of sleeping at night, then irregularity in sleeping habits come into being. This irregularity might eventually lead to insomnia. You can help yourself by maintaining a regular sleeping habit.
Usually, the effects of insomnia are not dangerous. Still, they have a considerable effect on your professional and social life. When living with insomnia, you are left with a tired body low in energy, lower concentration, and irritating behavior.
There is no worth in living with insomnia. Try to change your habits that have led you to this sleeping disorder and save yourself from a troubled future.