Insomnia: Definition, causes, symptoms, Insomnia during pregnancy

Insomnia: Definition, causes, symptoms, Insomnia during pregnancy


In the present time, stressful, hurried-worried, and ambitious lifestyles in all classes of people especially among the upper classes are increasing the cases of Insomnia or sleeplessness at an alarming level.


You can say sleep is a precious gift from God. Sleep is able to dissolve any kind of tension, anxiety, tiredness of the body or mind at a temporary level, and the next day you again wake up with a refreshed body and mind after a peaceful sleep. So sleep is necessary for both mind and body. Therefore insomnia affects both physically and mentally if last for a long duration.


Insomnia definition:

Insomnia is a sleeping disorder in which the affected person has persistent difficulty in falling or staying asleep affecting both duration and quality of sleep.


Insomnia symptoms:

It affects both mentally and physically. So symptoms are also presented accordingly such as…


  • The main symptoms are difficulty in falling asleep or staying asleep or both at night, resulting in disturbed quality and duration of sleep.


This changes in sleeping pattern results in

  • Lack of concentration during day times


  • Lapses in memory


  • Emotional instability causing fear, anger, confusion, etc.


  • Feeling of fatigue or lethargy both mentally and physically.


Causes of Insomnia:

  • Mental:

mental tension resulting from stress, hurries-worries, over-excitement, ambitiousness, failure in ambition, overwork, etc.


  • Physical:

Some clinical condition like gastritis, constipation, dyspepsia, pain in various diseases like arthritis etc. affects sleep.


  • Travel and work:

Traveling frequently in different time zones and hectic work schedules also affect sleep.


  • Poorly managed sleeping patterns:

Poor or bad sleeping habits like overeating at night, irregularity in bed timing, environment not comfortable for sleep, watching TV or reading exciting or demoralizing contents before bedtime, excessive intake of tea or coffee while going to bed, over-exercise before bedtime, and most importantly worrying about falling asleep, etc. affects the sleep.


  • Age:

Sleep reduces over the age. At the age of 12 sleep requirement is around 9 hours and the average sleep requirement decreases to 8 hours at the age of 20, 7 hours at the age of 40, and six to six and a half hours at 60 to 80 years of age.


  • Other:

Some medicines interfere with sleep like medicine for asthma, allergy, high blood pressure, and overuse of caffeine, nicotine, etc. 


  • Smoking also affects your sleep.


Insomnia during pregnancy:

Many physical changes occur during pregnancy. So pregnant women may face disturbed sleep. It is usually due to changes in hormone during pregnancy, urgency or increased need for urination, pains such as backache and stretching or cramping in the abdomen, anxiety, and responsibility as a mother for new coming family member, etc.


Treatment of Insomnia during pregnancy:

It is temporary and passes away after the birth of the baby. Lifestyle change, good supplementary diet, relaxation therapy with yoga and exercise, etc. This all helps in reducing insomnia and improving sleep during pregnancy.


Fatal familial insomnia:

Some person asks the question that can anyone die from insomnia? Fatal familial Insomnia or FFI is one of the types of insomnia that can lead to death. It is inherited in the family. It is a rare genetic degenerative brain disorder.


Insomnia is the primary characteristic of FFI which is mild initially but get worsen progressively. Insomnia can begin suddenly and in a few months can rapidly worsen. At last, the affected individual can sleep very little. Due to very little sleep, individual get physically and mentally deteriorated and the disease ultimately progress to coma and death.


It should be differentiated from other diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal degeneration, Creytzfeldt-Jacob disease, Huntington disease, Hashimoto’s encephalopathy, etc.


Treatment of FFI:

There is no specific cure for FFI. So line of treatment is usually directed towards management of specific symptoms which vary from affected person to person. Combined efforts of various specialist doctors like psychiatrists, psychologists, neurologists, even health care professionals, and social workers may be beneficial to patients.


Also read our full article about: Home remedies for insomnia


So this is all about insomnia. If you have any queries please ask in the comment section and share the article with your friends.

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