What Is Insomnia And Who Is At Higher Risk?
There are certain groups of people who are at higher risk of insomnia than others. It has been already noted that people who are having stress at work or home or medical conditions such as depression are at more risk of developing insomnia.
Insomnia is commonly seen in elderly populations and is associated with numerous individual and socioeconomic consequences. Elderly patients are more likely to suffer from chronic insomnia characterized by difficulty maintaining sleep than difficulty initiating sleep. Management of insomnia in these patients involves a careful assessment of any underlying medical condition.
Apart from this, individuals who have irregular sleep cycles are also at risk of developing insomnia. People whose jobs involve frequent time zone changes or shift work are at particularly high risk.
What Are The Symptoms Of Insomnia?
The most common symptom of insomnia is facing difficulty in either going to sleep, staying asleep or waking up frequently at night. Lack of sleep may cause you other symptoms during the day. Like, you may feel exhausted, irritated, have low energy, and you may find it difficult to make a concentrate on your work.
How Is Insomnia Diagnosed And Treated?
To find out, if you have insomnia your doctor will perform a few exams and ask about your symptoms, daily schedule and habits, and stress level too. He/she can also refer you to a doctor who specializes in sleep medicines.
How Is Insomnia Treated?
If your insomnia is caused by a change in your sleep timing, such as jet lag it will be treated on its own in a few days. However, if your insomnia persists for a long time, it is crucial to get the treatment which may include cognitive behavioural therapy and prescription sleeping pills.
If insomnia is caused by any underlying medical conditions, your doctor may first recommend treating the health issue at the same time. When the other health problem is treated, secondary insomnia goes away on its own.
What Sleeping Medicines Are Available In The UK To Treat Insomnia?
Prescription medicines, as well as OTC strong sleeping pills in the UK, can help treat insomnia. There are chances that your doctor may advise you to go for cognitive behavioural therapy than medicines.
If you decide to take sleeping tablets:
- Ask your doctor or pharmacist about any warning or potential side effects associated with the medicines.
- Take the medicine at a fixed time of day your doctor tells you to.
- Do not drive, operate machinery or do another activity that requires attention.
- Take the exact dosage as advised by your doctor.
- Do not drink alcohol while taking the sleeping pills.
- Talk to your doctor if you find relief in your symptoms and want to stop this medicine. You need to stop sleeping medicines gradually.
When taking these strong sleeping pills, make sure to give yourself enough amount of time to sleep i.e. for at least 7-8 hours.
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