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Causes of Insomnia, Self-Diagnosis, and Testing Methods

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Summarized by durumis AI

  • Major causes of insomnia include stress, depression, physical illnesses, medication use, environmental factors, and lifestyle habits.
  • To prevent and treat insomnia, consulting with professionals, managing stress, and maintaining a regular lifestyle pattern can be helpful.
  • Insomnia can significantly impact daily life, so if you have persistent issues, it’s best to seek help from a medical professional.
Causes of Insomnia, Self-Diagnosis, and Testing Methods

This article will discuss the causes of insomnia, as well as self-diagnosis and test methods for insomnia. One of the greatest needs of human life is sleep. However, insomnia can make it difficult to get a good night's sleep, leading to stress and disruption of daily routines. Remember the information about insomnia and hopefully this will be helpful.

Causes of Insomnia

 There are various causes of insomnia. Here are some common causes of insomnia.

1. Stress

One of the causes of insomnia is stress. Stress is something that can be experienced daily and can cause anxiety, anger, confusion, depression, instability, and more in individuals. Stress is known to be one of the major causes of insomnia.
Stress can cause physical and mental imbalances, leading to qualitative and quantitative problems with sleep. Stress secretes hormones like cortisol, which can be helpful for us temporarily, but can have negative effects on our health if it persists.
Stress management is necessary to prevent or treat insomnia. Daily exercise, meditation, breathing techniques, a positive attitude towards progress, social relationships where support can be received, regular breaks, etc. can help manage stress.

2. Depression

Depression is one of the causes of insomnia. Depression typically causes symptoms such as fatigue, sadness, lack of interest, lethargy, etc., and if these symptoms persist, they can potentially trigger insomnia.
Depression can be triggered by a variety of factors from a neuroscientific perspective. This includes everyday stress, brain chemical imbalances, genetic factors, changes in lifestyle, and physical illness.
Depression and insomnia are closely related. Insomnia caused by depression usually makes it difficult to fall asleep, and the quality of sleep is reduced. Conversely, insomnia can worsen the symptoms of depression. These interactions are an important consideration in the treatment plans of patients with depression and insomnia.
If you are experiencing depression and insomnia, it is important to consult with a professional and receive appropriate treatment, such as medication and behavioral therapy, if necessary.

3. Physical illness

Insomnia is typically related to an individual's daily life or mental factors, but it can sometimes occur due to physical illness.

Pain: Chronic pain or uncomfortable environmental conditions (e.g., hot weather, noisy environment) can interfere with sleep.
Respiratory problems: If you have respiratory problems such as sleep apnea, bronchitis, or asthma, you may have difficulty breathing and experience sleep interruptions.
Heart disease: Heart disease, hypertension, heart failure, etc. can interfere with sleep by increasing heart rate or blood pressure at night.
Endocrine disorders: Endocrine disorders such as thyroid problems and diabetes can be directly related to sleep.
Gastrointestinal disorders: Gastrointestinal disorders such as acid reflux and esophagitis can interfere with sleep by reflux of the contents of the esophagus or stomach when lying down.

If insomnia occurs due to these physical problems, the symptoms can be alleviated or eliminated by treating the relevant illness. In addition, mental factors should be considered along with physical problems, so it is important to consult with a specialist to determine the optimal treatment method.  

4. Medications

Insomnia can occur because of problems with sleep, and medications are one of the common causes that can trigger these problems. Medications can work in various ways that affect sleep.
One of the most common types of medications is central nervous system depressants, which reduce brain waves and induce sleep. These medications include sedatives, antidepressants, and anti-anxiety medications. However, these medications can have negative effects on the quality and quantity of sleep, and long-term use can cause other problems.
Another type of medication is stimulants. These medications stimulate the central nervous system, which can interfere with sleep. These medications include caffeine or nicotine. These medications can cause temporary sleep disturbances.
Finally, some medications do not affect sleep but are used to alleviate the symptoms of underlying conditions that can cause sleep disturbances. These medications include steroids, weight loss medications, etc.
Medications are only one of the causes of insomnia, and not everyone who uses medications experiences insomnia. However, if you experience sleep problems after using medications, it is a good idea to consult with a doctor to find ways to deal with it.

5. Environmental Factors

Insomnia can be caused by a variety of factors. Of these, environmental factors play a very important role.

Noise: Noise generated in the surrounding environment degrades sleep quality. In particular, if you live in a noisy city, noise may persist even at night, making it difficult to fall asleep.
Light: Light from a light bulb in a room at night or from streetlights inhibits the secretion of melatonin, which interferes with sleep. To reduce the effects of this light, it is good to sleep in a dark room and you can block the light with curtains.
Temperature: If the temperature is not optimal, the quality of sleep can be degraded. If you sleep in a room that is too hot, you will sweat a lot, which can degrade the quality of sleep. Conversely, if you sleep in a room that is too cold, your body temperature will drop, which can degrade the quality of sleep.
Bed and pillows: If the bed or pillows are uncomfortable, the quality of sleep can be degraded. Therefore, it is good to use a comfortable bed and pillows.
Pets: If pets sleep with you, sleep quality may deteriorate. If pets run around or make noise, they can interfere with sleep, so it is good to sleep in a separate room.
Bedroom environment: If the bedroom is messy or smells unpleasant, sleep quality can deteriorate. Therefore, it is good to keep the bedroom clean and well-ventilated.

6. Lifestyle habits

Insomnia is a condition of difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Lifestyle habits are one of the causes of insomnia.
a. Overwork and lack of regular lifestyle patterns
Workers often work overtime and do not maintain a regular lifestyle pattern, so their sleep is affected. Maintaining a regular lifestyle pattern can naturally create a systematic sleep pattern.
b. Increased screen time
Increased screen time from computers, smartphones, and tablets is one of the causes of insomnia. These devices emit blue light, which interferes with sleep. To reduce screen time and improve sleep quality, it is good to shut down all screen devices 1 hour before bed.
c. Excessive consumption of caffeine and alcohol
Caffeine and alcohol are one of the causes of insomnia. Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system, affecting sleep, and alcohol degrades sleep quality. Therefore, it is good to limit the consumption of caffeine and alcohol.
d. Lack of activity
In general, lack of activity has a negative effect on sleep. Sufficient exercise improves physical fitness and can improve sleep quality.
e. Irregular eating habits
Not keeping meal times or overeating has a negative effect on sleep. Also, excessive eating consumes energy during the digestive process, interfering with sleep. It is good to maintain a regular and balanced diet.

In Conclusion

Insomnia is a common sleep disorder that can have a significant impact on daily life. While there are many causes of insomnia, it is important to talk to a medical professional to determine the best course of treatment. You can try the tips above to self-diagnose insomnia. However, if you continue to have problems sleeping despite these efforts, it is good to seek professional help.

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