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What causes insomnia?

While there are no official guidelines about how much sleep you should get each night, because everyone is different, what’s important is whether you feel you get enough sleep, and whether your sleep is of good quality.

Could I have a sleep disorder?

If you constantly feel tired and your sleep is affecting your day-to-day life, then you may have a sleep disorder, such as insomnia. Sleep problems get worse the longer we leave then so, if you don’t think you’re sleeping well, then now is the time to tackle the problem.

Insomnia, also known as sleeplessness, is a sleep disorder. People with insomnia disorder may have difficulty falling asleep, or staying asleep as long as they’d like to despite have ample opportunity to sleep. They may wake up feeling like they’ve not slept.

Commons causes are:

  • lifestyle factors
  • stress
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • bedroom environment
  • physical health conditions

When suffering from insomnia, it is common for people to resort to taking sleeping tablets, or other medication to provide some relief. However, these drugs don’t address the underlying problem and they can have unpleasant side effects. They can also become less effective over time.

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) advise against drug intervention for episodes of insomnia lasting more than four weeks, and instead recommend the therapeutic treatment which is used in Sleepstation – Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for insomnia (CBTi).

What changes could I make to help me sleep?

If you think you might have insomnia, there are a number of things you can try to help yourself get a good night’s sleep. These include:

  • setting regular times for going to bed and waking up
  • following a bedtime routine
  • making sure that your bedroom is cool, dark and quiet.
  • avoiding caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, heavy meals and exercise close to bedtime
  • avoiding using bright screens close to bedtime
  • avoiding daytime naps
  • writing a list of your worries and possible solutions before bedtime, to help you forget about them until morning.

If making simple changes doesn’t work for you, then you may need help to tackle the problem. Start by answering a few short questions to find out how we can help you sleep better.