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What Are All The Causes Of Insomnia?

Insomnia is not a disease but a symptom. The causes of insomnia are many and varied.

You may be one of many, many people who cannot sleep because of life stresses. Or your insomnia may be the sign of an underlying health problem that needs medical attention. Perhaps you are expecting a baby or undergoing menopause. Or you are waking up because of pain from arthritis, fibromyalgia, or cancer.

You may have poor sleep hygiene, or you are unable to sleep because one of your family members snores or interferes with your sleep in another way. Finding out the cause of your insomnia will help you to beat it. In turn, getting some rest will give you the strength to tackle the real problem. The following are some of the most common insomnia causes.

Stress and Anxiety

Whether it’s caused by a problem at work or at home, stress can have a tyrannical hold over us. Some of us cannot help but worry constantly, and this makes it impossible to drift off to sleep at night.

Our bodies’ response to stress can have very serious health consequences. It’s crucial to learn how to manage our stress so that we can get some much-needed sleep. Then, we might have the energy to tackle the sources of our stress.

Medical Causes of Insomnia

Insomnia is a side effect or symptom of many medical conditions. You may have a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea or restless leg syndrome. Or your difficulties sleeping may be an early symptom of heart failure.

What Are All The Causes Of Insomnia?

Psychophysiological Causes of Insomnia

In some people, insomnia occurs as a symptom of an underlying condition, but even when that condition is cured or goes away, the insomnia remains. This is because the person has developed behaviors that perpetuate sleep loss. When this happens, it is known as learned, conditioned, or psychophysiological insomnia.

Fibromyalgia and Other Painful Causes of Insomnia

Chronic pain is a common cause of sleeplessness. People who suffer from fibromyalgia, for instance, quite commonly complain of insomnia. If you have arthritis or cancer or any other condition where pain is a constant, it will be hard for you to sleep. There are ways of treating and managing pain so that it interferes less with your sleep.

Women and the Causes of Insomnia

Women are more often affected by insomnia than men — for good reason. Aside from the fact that we often shoulder a larger share of family responsibilities in addition to our day jobs, our menstrual cycles can also interfere with sleep patterns. Pregnancy and menopause — with its accompanying hot flashes and night sweats — are other causes of insomnia.

Insomnia and the Elderly

It is often said that as we age, we sleep less. Some sleep experts dispute that this is necessarily so. Is there a link between our bodies’ aging processes and insomnia? Why does it seem that the elderly have such trouble sleeping?

Mood Disorders and Insomnia

Stress and anxiety are for many people the cause of sleepless nights, but in a number of us those negative emotions may turn into a clinical condition. Insomnia is a recognized symptom of mood disorders such as depression. On the other hand, antidepressant drugs have also been known to cause insomnia.

Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome

Do you ever feel as though your body and its rhythms are simply out of whack with the rest of the world?

Many people have delayed sleep phase syndrome. They are perfectly healthy, but their circadian rhythms are simply set differently from other people’s. Yet our culture places a great value on “early to bed, early to rise” habits. If you are a night owl, yet are forced by your work or school schedule to rise with the larks, it can be like a kind of torture.

Medications That Cause Insomnia

Your insomnia may be a symptom of an underlying health problem. Or it may be a side effect of a medication that you are taking for an health condition. Many drugs can interfere with sleep patterns, including drugs for the heart and for asthma.

True Insomnia

A small number of people suffer from a condition known as true insomnia. This is where all other possible causes of insomnia have been ruled out and the problem seems to be that these people are born with abnormal sleep patterns.

Fatal Insomnia

Sometimes, I know, it feels as though your insomnia will be the death of you. For a small number of people worldwide, that is literally true. These people suffer from a rare, inherited disease known as fatal familial insomnia.