Insomnia is the inability to obtain a sufficient amount of sleep to feel rested and can be characterized either by difficulty falling or staying asleep.
Insomnia can have a wide variety of causes.
Some common causes of Insomnia are:
- medical conditions,
- changes in environment,
- poor sleep habits,
- eating too late in the evening, and
- learned insomnia.
Insomnia can affect anyone including children and teens but as we age our internal clocks can definitely be impacted.
How to Get a Good Night’s Sleep
- Create a calming and consistent bedtime routine.
- Take a bath, listen to calming music, or write in a journal.
- Talk to your physician or pharmacist about the prescription and over-the-counter medications you are currently taking and see if there are alternatives that have less side effects.
- Stop using stimulants by early evening. Reduce caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol consumption. These affect your body’s ability to get good, deep sleep.
- Go to bed at a consistent time. Our internal clock works best when our bedtimes aren’t all over the place.
- Turn off the TV and go to bed.
- Use relaxation techniques; such as meditation, deep breathing, or progressive muscle relaxation.
- Insomnia can be a symptom of a medical condition. See your physician for a medical evaluation to determine if there is an underlying medical disorder.
Counseling can help reduce stress and anxiety by helping clients to develop healthy coping skills and sorting through current life stressors that can impact our ability to sleep well. We all need help periodically and seeking help is a sign of strength and courage.