Specialist expertise: Sleep Disorders, Epilepsy, Neurology, Headache.
Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, with some studies suggesting that this affects up to one in three people in the U.K. Insomnia is when an adult patient has difficultly in initiating (onset insomnia) or maintaining (maintenance insomnia) between 7-9 hours of sleep more than 3 times per week. Insomnia will often lead to a patient waking up feeling unrefreshed and tired throughout the day. This can cause patients suffering with insomnia to develop negative sleep patterns and behaviours. More persistent insomnia can poorly affect everyday life, and has been associated with causing anxiety, depression, excessive fatigue, and a decline in physical health.
There are two main forms of insomnia:
Transient insomnia (under 3 months), which is usually caused by a change in environment or stressful event in life. Often this insomnia can be helped by improving a patients sleep hygiene. A patient should monitor their symptoms to see if their condition develops into more persistent insomnia, and if they are worried about their insomnia, or it is affecting their day-to-day life, they should seek medical advice.
Chronic insomnia (over 3 months) can seriously affect a patient’s quality of life. And may need more specific forms of treatment.