What is insomnia? This may seem like a dumb question, everyone knows what insomnia is. Well, actually… not really. Insomnia is misrepresented and misunderstood in a lot of ways. That’s why we thought it a good idea to start our series with a defintion of insomnia.
What is insomnia? A sleep disorder defined as a difficulty falling asleep (onset insomnia), staying asleep (maintenance insomnia) and waking up too early. But, it’s a complicated condition, sleep can be affected by anything from stress and environmental factors, to different physical or physiological conditions. In short, not being able to sleep doesn’t necessarily mean that you have insomnia, despite insomnia being used as a kind of catch-all term for all sleep woes.
What is insomnia? A cluster of symptoms and consequences
A persistent difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep causes fatigue and low energy, difficulty concentrating, changes in mood. In turn these insomnia symptoms can have a significant impact on a person’s professional life, their relationships and so on.
Chronic, acute, comorbid
Insomnia can be broken down into several subcategories according to frequency, severity and circumstances:
Insomnia is considered chronic when symptoms occur for a minimum of three nights a week and persist for three months or longer.
A brief episode of difficulty falling asleep triggered by stress, life events, jet-lag. Acute insomnia tends to disappear without treatment.
Insomnia can be comorbid (existing at the same time) with psychological conditions like depression and anxiety. What’s more, insomnia can also be caused by physical conditions like chronic pain and arthritis which make sleeping more difficult.
Who is most likely to suffer from insomnia?
Insomnia tends to become more common with age. Women are more likely to experience disturbed sleep than men and insomnia is a common complaint during pregnancy.
In this series, we break down everything you need to know about the causes of insomnia, how to measure your own insomnia and take you on a tour of all the solutions and treatments available.
Because even if it doesn’t feel like it in the middle of the night, unable to sleep for the nth night in a row, insomnia is not a life sentence, there are real, effective solutions out there. We’re here to help you! So let’s get started:
Dreem 2 is a solution designed to help people who experience difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep during the night. The headband collects data through the night and is then used to provide you with adapted exercises like sleep consolidation that will help you take the steps towards better sleep.
Up next: What causes insomnia?