Insomnia or sleeplessness is a common problem with many in this world of stress and tension. Life offers us with numerous causes to get tensed or feel depressed and that often takes a toll on our sleep. Almost all adults experience insomnia at some point of their life, but it may not be continuous or consistent. Chronic insomnia is a thing to worry about for sleepless nights affect and slacken the pace of day to day activities due to excessive fatigue, irritability and poor concentration. Also insomnia may be a hint towards some serious underlying disease. Insomnia is not judged by the hours one gets to sleep, for that varies from person to person. It is actually judged by the quality of sleep. Insomnia varies from poor quality of sleep, interrupted sleep to total loss of sleep. Inadequate sleep may be an initiation of insomnia. Insomnia may be of the following types.
1. Transient insomnia is one in which the symptoms last less than a week.
2. Short-term insomnia is one in which the symptoms persist for a duration which is between one to three weeks.
3. Chronic insomnia is one in which the symptoms continue beyond three weeks.
Insomnia is common among all age groups, but it usually increases with age. Women are more attacked by insomnia when compared to men. Insomnia is common among low income groups, alcoholics and mentally ill patients.
Causes of Insomnia:
4. Presence of too much noise while sleeping.
5. Unpleasant room temperature
6. Changes in shift work
7. Sleeping during day
8. Excessive alcohol intake
9. Heavy smoking
10. Excessive intake of tea and coffee
12. Nasal congestion
13. Nocturnal asthma
14. Acid reflux disease
15. Hormonal turbulence during pregnancy or menopause.
16. High blood pressure
17. Disruptive bed partner who snores loudly or moves legs periodically.
18. Sexual dissatisfaction
19. Poor sleep hygiene
20. Respiratory disorders
21. Circulatory disorders
22. Psychiatric conditions
23. Jet lag
24. Withdrawal from alcohol, drugs or stimulant medicines.
25. Presence of acute medical illness
26. Any kind of mania or phobia.
Symptoms of Insomnia:
1. Waking up several times during night
2. Poor concentration in day time
3. Impaired memory
5. Uncoordinated movements
6. Impaired social interaction.
Herbal Remedies for Insomnia:
1. California poppy is known for promoting sleep.
2. Chamomile may be used as tea. It has sedative properties.
3. Hops may be taken as tea. It helps in sleeping and cures indigestion
4. Kava relaxes the nerves and muscles and helps in sleeping.
5. Lemon balm is an effective sleep promoting herb.
6. Passion flower has sedative properties. It relaxes muscles and nerves.
7. Rooibos may be taken as tea. It promotes sleep and eases any kind of pain or inflammation.
8. Oat straw soothes the nervous system.
9. St John’s wort lengthens the deep sleep cycle.
10. Skullcap is a sleep promoting herb.
11. The herb valerian also helps to have a sound sleep.