What is insomnia?

Dissatisfaction with sleep own to difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep or to waking up too early is present in roughly one-third of adults on a weekly basis.

Insomnia symptoms may also be an independent risk factor for suicide attempts and deaths from suicide, independent of depression.

Insomnia is a sleep disorder where people find it hard to fall asleep, stay asleep throughout the night, or wake up early in the morning and aren’t able to fall asleep again. This can dramatically affect a person’s quality of life, function and well-being.

How is insomnia currently treated?

Current treatments encompass helping people with sleep hygiene, psychological and behavioural changes, and over-the-counter and prescription medications. Whilst some medication can be used in the short term, there are potential issues with effectiveness and even dependency in the long term.

The choice of treatment of insomnia depends on the specific insomnia symptoms, their severity and expected duration, coexisting disorders, the willingness of the patient to engage in behavioural therapies, and the vulnerability of the patient to the adverse effects of medications. Patients with an acute onset of insomnia of short duration often have an identifiable precipitant (e.g., a medical illness or the loss of a loved one).

Clinical research papers on sleep can be found here;