Whether it’s down to stress, worry or noisy neighbours, we’ve all had a few sleepless nights in our lifetime. But if you’re consistently finding it hard to fall asleep and stay asleep, or tiredness is having a negative impact on your life, it could be that you’re suffering from insomnia.
Insomnia is a surprisingly common condition, with around one-third of Brits likely to experience episodes at least once in their lifetime. Episodes can last from a few days to a few years, and severity can range from issues with light or disturbed sleep to extended periods of not being able to sleep at all.
Here are some common symptoms to look out for:
Remember that there’s no ‘normal’ amount of sleep you should be getting, but that an average adult usually requires between seven and nine hours a night. Consistently getting more than seven hours can have a significant impact on your mental and physical health.
There are two types of insomnia; the first, primary insomnia, is lesser understood but is categorised as sleeplessness that isn’t caused by or related to any other factors. The second, secondary insomnia, is sleeplessness that is caused by another factor.
Factors can include:
The good news is that, if your insomnia is of the secondary variety, you should be able to tackle it by working on its cause. Here are some general tips to get a better night’s sleep:
Insomnia is a common condition and can be resolved with the appropriate treatment or lifestyle changes. However, if you’re having trouble identifying the cause of your insomnia, or the above tips aren’t helping and sleeplessness is having a real impact on your life, it could be time to see your GP. Your doctor can check for any previously unidentified conditions or even refer you for CBT, a great treatment for insomnia that works by helping you to change your thoughts and behaviours around sleep.