How common is insomnia?

sleep medicine

Insomnia is a condition that affects many people. In fact, it is one of the most common sleep disorders in the world. According to some estimates, as many as one-third of all adults suffer from insomnia at some point in their lives. While there are many different causes of insomnia, it can be a very frustrating and debilitating condition. In this blog post, we will discuss how common insomnia is and what you can do if you are struggling with this condition.

Overview: What is insomnia?

Insomnia is a lack of sleep or the inability to stay asleep at night, which leads to unrefreshing or non-restorative sleep. And it’s a widespread problem that depletes your energy, mood, and capacity to function during the day. Chronic sleeplessness can even lead to major health issues.

Some people can’t fall asleep, no matter how tired they are. Others wake up in the middle of the night and remain awake for hours, anxiously monitoring the clock. Insomnia is defined by the quality of your sleep and how you feel after sleeping—not the amount of time you spend asleep or how quickly you nod off. Even if you sleep for eight hours a night, if you’re drowsy and weary during the day, you might be suffering from insomnia.

Although insomnia is the most frequent sleep complaint, it is not a single condition. It’s more accurate to think of it as a sign of another ailment, whether it’s due to over-caffeination in the afternoon or something more severe like feeling stressed out.

The good news is that most cases of sleeplessness can be resolved with simple modifications you can make to your daily routines and sleeping environment; without the assistance of sleep experts or the use of prescription or over-the-counter sleeping pills. You may put an end to your insomnia’s aggravation by addressing the underlying causes and implementing minor adjustments to your daily habits and sleeping environment.

Symptoms and causes

What causes insomnia?

Insomnia can be caused by a variety of factors, including physical, biological, and psychological ones.

  • Life stressors include your job, relationships, financial difficulties, and more.
  • Unhealthy lifestyle and sleep habits.
  • Anxiety disorders, depression, and/or other mental health problems.
  • Chronic diseases like cancer.
  • Chronic pain due to arthritis, fibromyalgia, or other conditions.
  • Gastrointestinal disorders, such as heartburn.
  • Hormone fluctuations due to menstruation, menopause, thyroid disease or other issues.
  • Medications and other substances.
  • Neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s disease.
  • Other sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome.

What are the risk factors for insomnia?

Women are more prone to sleeplessness than men. Women are more susceptible to insomnia than males. Pregnancy and hormonal fluctuations can cause sleep problems. Hormonal fluctuations such as premenstrual syndrome (PMS) or menopause can also impact sleep quality. Sleepiness becomes more common with age. Because of physical changes linked to aging and other medical issues, older individuals may be less likely to fall asleep quickly because of their condition or medication use that disrupts sleep.

See also  Home remedies for insomnia treatment

What are the consequences of insomnia?

When you can’t fall asleep or your rest is disturbed, there are a variety of techniques to assist with sleep disorders:

  • Be irritable, anxious, or depressed.
  • Feel fatigued or low on energy throughout the day.
  • Have memory problems or difficulty concentrating.
  • Struggle at work, school, or in relationships.

Common psychological and medical causes of insomnia

Insomnia that lasts a few days and goes away on its own, especially when it is caused by an obviously transitory cause such as tension over a coming presentation, a painful breakup, or jet lag, occurs sometimes. Other times, sleeplessness is stubbornly enduring. Chronic sleeplessness is usually the result of a physical or mental problem.

Anxiety, stress, and depression. The majority of people who suffer from chronic insomnia have one or more of these eleven causes. Difficulty sleeping can also exacerbate anxiety, stress, and depression symptoms. Other frequent emotional and psychological factors include rage, anxiety, sadness, bipolar disorder, and trauma. To get rid of your sleeplessness, you’ll need to address the underlying issues that are causing it.

sleep medicine

Medical problems or illness. Insomnia can be caused by a variety of medical conditions and illnesses, including asthma, allergies, Parkinson’s disease, hyperthyroidism, acid reflux, kidney disease, and cancer. Chronic pain is another frequent reason for sleeplessness.

sleep medicine

Medications. Prescription medications, such as antidepressants, ADHD stimulants, corticosteroids, thyroid hormones, high blood pressure medicines, and some contraceptives can all affect sleep. Cold and flu medicines that contain alcohol, pain relievers that contain caffeine (Midol, Excedrin), diuretics, and slimming pills are among the most common over-the-counter offenders.

sleep medicine

Sleep disorders. Insomnia is a sleep condition in and of itself, but it may also be an indication of other sleep disorders, including sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, and circadian rhythm disturbances linked to jet lag or late-night shift work.

cognitive behavioral therapy

Habits that cause insomnia and disrupt sleep

Treating underlying physical and mental concerns is a good first step, but it may not be sufficient to cure your sleeplessness. You should also consider your daily routines. Some of the techniques you use to cope with insomnia might actually be exacerbating the issue.

Other nighttime problems include having an odd sleeping schedule, taking naps, eating refined carbohydrates or heavy dinners too close to bedtime, and not getting enough exercise or exercising too late in the day. Having an irregular sleep cycle, taking naps, consuming refined carbohydrates or high-calorie meals before bedtime, and not getting enough activity or exercising late in the day are all examples of daytime habits that might negatively impact your ability to sleep at night.

Poor daytime habits can contribute to insomnia, as can a poor night’s sleep.

Changing the behaviors that are encouraging sleeplessness might be enough to cure insomnia on its own. It’s possible that your body will need a few days to get acclimated, but once you do, you’ll sleep better.

Insomnia and anxiety

The more trouble you have sleeping, the more it begins to intrude on your thoughts. You may dread going to bed because you know you’ll toss and turn for hours or wake up at 2 a.m. tomorrow. Alternatively, maybe you’re afraid because you have a big day ahead of you tomorrow, and if you don’t get a good eight hours of sleep, you’ll regret it?

See also  Home remedies for insomnia treatment

It’s worth noting that being anxious about sleeping problems makes them worse, as does waiting for sleep. Anxiety about how tired you’ll be or if you’ll be able to fall asleep floods your body with adrenaline, and before you know it, you’re wide awake.

Relieving anxiety that keeps you from falling or staying asleep

If sleep problems are preventing you from unwinding at night, the following techniques may assist. The objective is to teach your body to link the bed with sleep rather than any other activity, particularly not irritation and anxiety.

Use the bedroom only for sleeping and sex. Avoid working from home if at all possible. If not, use your computer or watch TV in another room. The aim is for your brain and body to get a strong signal that it’s time to nod off as you enter your bedroom.

Move bedroom clocks out of view. When the minutes tick by anxiously as you can’t sleep—knowing that you’ll be exhausted when the alarm goes off—you’re creating a surefire recipe for sleeplessness. You may utilize an alarm, but make certain you can’t see the time while in bed.

Get out of bed when you can’t sleep. Don’t push yourself to sleep. Tossing and turning will only increase your anxiety. Get up, go somewhere peaceful, and do something relaxing like reading or meditation. When you’re sleepy, return to bed.

Challenging the worries and thoughts that fuel insomnia

It’s also beneficial to question the negative beliefs about sleep and your sleeplessness issue that you’ve accumulated over time. It’s all about recognizing self-destructive ideas and replacing them with more realistic ones.

Diagnosis and tests

How is insomnia diagnosed?

There is no easy way to diagnose insomnia. Your doctor will conduct a physical examination and ask you questions in order to understand your sleep issues and symptoms better. The diagnosis of insomnia necessitates a thorough examination of your sleeping habits with your doctor. To determine whether your drugs or medical conditions are affecting your ability to sleep, your doctor will examine both of these things. You could also try one or more of the following:

  • Get a blood test: A blood test might be suggested to rule out any medical issues that may be causing your insomnia, such as thyroid disorders or iron deficiency.
  • Keep a sleep diary: During your appointment, you may be asked to keep a sleep diary for one to two weeks (bedtime, waking time, naps, caffeine use, and so on). This data can assist your doctor in detecting patterns or behaviors that prevent you from getting rest.
  • Complete a sleep study: Sleep studies (polysomnograms) are not required for the diagnosis of sleeplessness. If your doctor suspects sleep apnea or another sleep condition is responsible for your sleeplessness, you may be referred to a sleep center or allowed to do the study at home.

Management and treatment

What are the complications of insomnia?

Sleep deprivation can have a detrimental impact on both your physical and mental health over time. Insomnia, in particular, has the potential to affect your emotional well-being as well as your physical and mental health. It is possible that these symptoms are caused by simple insomnia; nevertheless, they may also be connected to more serious issues such as depression or anxiety.

  • Diabetes.
  • Driving accidents, injuries, and falls.
  • High blood pressure (hypertension), heart disease, and stroke.
  • Mood disorders.
  • Weight gain and obesity.
See also  Home remedies for insomnia treatment

How is insomnia managed or treated?

It’s common for insomnia to go away on its own in the first few days. Chronic sleeplessness may be treated with:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia: Therapy (CBT-I): CBT-I is a brief, structured treatment for insomnia that helps you identify and replace thoughts and behavior patterns that cause or exacerbate sleep difficulties with habits that foster good sleep. CBT-I, unlike sleeping pills, works to address the underlying causes of your sleep issues.
  • Medications: The most effective strategies for improving your sleep are to make behavioral and lifestyle modifications. Taking sleeping pills for a short period, however, can help you sleep in some situations. Sleep medications should only be taken now and then or for a restricted length of time, according to doctors. Chronic sleeplessness does not respond well to the usage of these drugs.

Can melatonin help me sleep?

Melatonin is a hormone produced by the body that encourages sleep. Melatonin tablets are used to help people fall asleep. However, there’s no evidence that these supplements work. Because the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate supplements in the same way as medicines, you should consult your doctor before taking one.


Insomnia is a common disorder that can be very disruptive to how you live your life. It’s important for those who experience insomnia or sleeplessness on a regular basis to get professional help so they can find the cause and the right treatment options. We hope this article has been helpful in understanding how insomnia affects people, how it develops over time, and how someone might learn how to cope with their problems by getting restful sleep at night.  If you have any questions or concerns about what we’ve discussed here please don’t hesitate to contact us – our team of experts is ready and waiting!


How common is insomnia in Australia?

Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders, affecting approximately 20% of people in Australia.  It’s also a serious condition that can affect how you feel and how well you function during the day.

Which age group is most affected by insomnia?

While insomnia can affect people of any age, it’s most common in adults aged 30 to 60. Younger people and the elderly may also experience insomnia but to a lesser degree.

Who is most affected by sleep disorders?

People who experience difficulty sleeping on a regular basis are more likely to be affected by sleep disorders. This includes people with insomnia, restless leg syndrome (RLS), and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

How can I stop my insomnia?

If your sleep problems are caused by stress, anxiety, or depression then getting treatment for these conditions will help you stop your insomnia. A good way to treat this is with cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which looks at how thoughts and feelings affect behavior such as sleeping patterns.

Leave a Reply