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Saturday, March 21

Insomnia- Why Can't I Sleep

Many of us has had at least one restless or sleepless night. The tossing and turning you encountered could have been caused by a multitude of factors; including stress, illness, anxiety, or perhaps, the over consumption of caffeine or alcohol.

Whatever the reason, chances are you hate not sleeping.Our ability to be productive at work and even at play is due to not having enough sleep. We feel tired, cannot concentrate, and are far more sensitive to emotional and physical stressors. Basically, we just aren't ourselves.

The fact remains: sleep and relaxation are equally as important, if not more, than diet and exercise. It's our body's way of recuperating. Think of us as say… a rechargeable battery. When we sleep our mind and body go through a replenishment process. We can compare batteries being inserted into the charger to our climbing into bed for a long slumber. Only when the charger is plugged in, however, do the batteries begin to recharge. We can equate this to our sleep process. But for some, "plugging in" to good sleep remains extremely difficult.

Your mood and performance can be severly affected due to a few nights of bad sleep.Experts state ,as well, that the longer a sleep problem persisits,it is unlikely to go away without some form of intervention by treatment. Insomnia should not be ignored. It is not a fact of life, as so many of us believe, and there is help.

Do you have Insomnia?

Are you are constantly struggling with sleep quality, not getting enough sleep, and suffer from the following symptoms, you may have insomnia. Ask yourself these questions.

Do you Have problems falling asleep?
Are you frequently waking up during the night and cannot fall back asleep?
Getting up earlier than you want in the morning?
Even after sleeping a good 7-9 hours,you awake un-refreshed.

You are not alone if you have said yes to any of these questions.According to a recent study, reports indicated 35% of all adults get the required amount of sleep,and that nearly half of all Americans have some difficulty sleeping.

Experts,however,have suggested that only 1 in 3 people suffer from a chronic disorder. But regardless of its frequency, our emotional and physical well being is in danger as a loss of sleep wreaks havoc.Impaired concentration, diminished memory, constant headaches and the increased risk of substance abuse and motor vehicle accidents are some of the major factors of prolonged insomnia.

Signs and Symptoms:

Signs and symptoms of insomnia/lack of sleep differ from person to person. Some individuals may suffer from anxiety approaching bedtime, while others fail to feel refreshed even after getting and abundant amount of sleep. Other symptoms may include; not being able to sleep despite being extremely tired, daytime drowsiness, irritability, feeling of depression, and impaired ability to perform normal activities.

Types of Insomnia:

Two types of insomnia are prevalent; chronic and short term. Chronic diagonoised insomnia, or on-going insomnia, occurs at least three nights a week over a month's time. There are two classifications of chronic insomnia;

Primary Insomnia: Insomnia not related to any other health or medical problems.

Secondary Insomnia: Insomnia caused by an underlying medical condition (physical and mental), medication, or poor sleep environment.
Short term (transient) insomnia is lack of sleep lasting for one night to a few weeks. Intermittent insomnia is the last class of insomnia and is characterized by 'bouts' of insomnia, or insomnia occurring from time to time

It has proven extremely difficult for treating insomnia for patients and care providers alike.Every person presents his/her own set of unique problems and circumstances. There exists no cure-all for people suffering from chronic sleep problems; rather physicians aim to treat the condition through a multi-factorial approach. The Four of the most popular methods for treating insomnia include:

Reconditioning: Reconditioning therapy is a method which involves re-organizing the environment a person uses to nothing more than a place of rest.Reading or watching TV in bed must be stopped, and used only to sleep.

Sleep Restriction: Sleep Restriction is done under the guidance of a medical proffesional. This technique is used to alter andlessen the time spent in bed by the person. People with insomnia often spend too much time in bed trying to fall asleep. Going to bed later or waking earlier is done until normal sleep patterns return.

Relaxation Therapy: This type of theory aims to reduce stress, tension, and anxiety in a person relaxing the muscles and diminishing 'racing' thoughts.

Medications: Perhaps the most controversial of all treatments, despite its success, medications are used to alleviate anxiety and treat underlying medical conditions (e.g. depression) that may be contributing to the condition.The medications used to treat insomnia (over-the-counter and prescription) carry an extreme risk of physical and psychological dependency. In addition, there are many side effects associated with the use of these drugs; including morning grogginess, dry mouth, dizziness, and nervousness. Lastly, the majority of these medications are recommended for a maximum of 14 days of continuous use.

What you need is an all natural, safe, and long-term solution for Your insomnia, or other sleep related-issues.Understanding that sleep is essential,one needs to find treatment that bridges the gap between your sleeplessness and a great night's rest. Trouble sleeping is often the result of naturally occurring chemicals in the brain, particularly adrenaline and non-adrenaline. These chemicals are used by the body for alertness. However, in insomnia these "awake" chemicals are more active than your "sedentary" chemicals.The most important of all the "sedentary" chemicals, as far as sleep is concerned, is GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). This chemical slows down brain activity, relaxing the body and allowing you to sleep. In the majority of insomnia sufferers, GABA doesn't work as it should.

The result? Restlessness and problems falling asleep. -Kevin Naidoo

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