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Insomnia: What Are the Causes and Symptoms?

    There are a few reasons why you may be experiencing insomnia. The causes and symptoms are different for everyone. If you struggle with insomnia, Dr. Barry Chase and the rest of his team may help you.

    There are two main types of insomnia – primary and secondary insomnia. You get primary insomnia if you have sleep problems that have no relation to another health problem. On the other hand, secondary insomnia happens when your problem is a result of health conditions such as cancer, depression, and asthma.

    Symptoms of Insomnia

    • Reduced attention, concentration, and memory
    • Sleepiness during daytime
    • Fatigue
    • Reduced energy and motivation to get through the day
    • Increased frustration about your sleep
    • Irritability or moodiness
    • Reduced productivity in school or at work
    • Aggression and sleepiness


    In most cases, insomnia is caused or made worse by other problems. Common causes include:


    Common stressors are the death of a loved one, pressure from work, and personal pressures. It is common to have insomnia if you don’t have effective ways to manage stress.

    Drug Abuse

    Medication or substance abuse may cause insomnia. It may be the side-effect of various medications. Allergy and common cold medication, for example, may contain pseudoephedrine which may cause insomnia. Other medications that could make it difficult to sleep are those related to Parkinson’s disease, ADHD, and blood pressure medication.

    Drinking caffeine or alcohol before going to bed may cause insomnia. Stimulants make it difficult to sleep and may result in frequent awakenings at night. If you rely on sleeping pills, you may have trouble sleeping if you suddenly stop.

    Mental Disorders

    Mental health has a close connection with sleep. In some instances, insomnia may be a result of existing mental health problems. The most common one is depression. Most people with depression have trouble sleeping at night. It is the most common mental illness and a common cause of insomnia. Bipolar disorder may cause insomnia as well. Getting help for your mental disorder may resolve the problem.


    If you regularly stay up late or have an irregular sleep partner, you may have insomnia.

    Medical Conditions

    Lots of physical illnesses may cause insomnia. If you have an illness that causes loss of mobility, pain, or discomfort, it may be difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep. Insomnia that results from existing medical conditions is a common problem for older adults since they are likely to struggle with chronic illnesses. Pregnancy may cause insomnia as well. During the last semester, a lot of women struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep.

    Environmental Factors

    Your sleeping environment may cause insomnia. If your sleeping area has disruptive factors such as excessive noise or light, it may be difficult to sleep. If your temperatures are too high or too low, you are likely to have insomnia. To take care of this problem, ensure that your sleeping area is peaceful and quiet with dim lights.

    In conclusion, there are various types of insomnia and all of them have different causes. Speaking with a doctor may help you fix it depending on the cause.