Insomnia News

Insomnia literally means “no sleep” in Latin. Medically, the disorder refers to anyone who has trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, and also to individuals with both problems. The problem is very common..

When insomnia lasts for a few days or weeks, it is typically referred to as acute insomnia. And if it is ongoing for months or years on end, this is known as chronic insomnia. A variety of different factors can contribute to both acute and chronic insomnia.

Causes of Insomnia

Acute insomnia is generally short-lived and is often related to a particularly stressful or emotional life event. Family and financial issues, work-related stress or undergoing trauma are common causes of acute insomnia. In contrast, chronic insomnia lasts longer, and it’s often a side effect of another condition or lifestyle choice. For this reason, most types of chronic insomnia are also referred to as secondary insomnias. This type of insomnia can be a side effect of certain medications or a symptom of some medical conditions, such as sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome and others.

There is another form of chronic insomnia known as primary insomnia. This is a form of insomnia that is not a symptom of other conditions or a side effect of medications. The cause of primary insomnia is often difficult to determine.


The treatment for insomnia will vary depending on its severity and duration. For some forms of acute insomnia, the issues may resolve on their own over time. Similarly, chronic insomnia can sometimes be fixed by changing medications or treating the underlying condition.

For others, finding a treatment for insomnia may be as simple as setting a better bedroom routine, banishing electronics from the bedroom or practicing simple at-home relaxation techniques. Others may need more extensive therapy or medications to help with their sleep issues, so it’s best to speak with a health care provider about the right options for you.

SOURCES: National Sleep Foundation, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, 2013

Date Posted
Article Title
Smartphones, Tablets Sabotaging Teens' Sleep

Study found more adolescents getting less rest because of temptations of technology

Could You Be Overdoing It With Sleeping Pills?

Know the risk/reward ratio of these drugs

When Moms Don't Sleep Well, Neither Do Their Kids

That could take a toll on child's development, researchers say

Sleepless Nights Plague Many Women in Middle Age

Phases in and around menopause play a big role in insomnia, CDC study finds

Can a Digital Doctor Help You Sleep?

New research says yes, and better-quality ZZZZs may help ease other mental health concerns

Sleepless Nights Do No Favors for Your Heart

Study ties insomnia to heightened odds for heart disease, stroke

Preterm Birth Risk Spikes in Mothers With Sleep Disorders

Pregnant women with apnea or insomnia have roughly twice the risk of delivering before 34 weeks, study finds

How Poor Sleep Might Raise Odds for Alzheimer's

A few bad nights might not hurt, but chronic sleep problems may be cause for concern, researcher says

Living With Purpose May Help Seniors Sleep Soundly

Sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome are less common in those with a reason to get up in the morning, study finds

Poor Sleep May Worsen Suicidal Thoughts

Treating insomnia might help improve emotional well-being, researchers suggest

Bed Partner Often Fuels Loved One's Insomnia

Well-intentioned tips to encourage better sleep often backfire, study finds

Mechanical Heart Valve Noise May Mean Sleepless Nights

Some even report that others can hear the sound, study finds

Could Tai Chi Ease Insomnia in Breast Cancer Survivors?

Study found it as effective as talk therapy for improving sleep and depression

Cervical Cancer May Leave Lasting Imprint on Survivors

Some symptoms, such as fatigue and insomnia, are still a problem long after treatment

Sleepless Nights, Unhealthy Hearts?

Chronic wakefulness might leave its mark on cardiovascular system, study suggests

Need More Zzzzz's?

Check out these tips from sleep doctors on getting a good night of shuteye

What Guides Docs' Sleeping Pill Picks? 'Same Old Same Old,' Study Says

Researchers asked why one popular drug is prescribed over another

'Off-Label' Antidepressants Common, But Where's the Evidence?

One-third are prescribed for conditions like pain or migraine with little scientific backup, study says

Sleepless Nights Linked to Asthma Later in Life

Adults with chronic insomnia 3 times more likely to develop the respiratory disorder, study suggests

Coping With Sleep Loss During Pregnancy

Changing hormones, anxiety and heartburn can lead to insomnia

Many Misuse OTC Sleep Aids: Survey

Consumer Reports finds the non-prescription drugs are taken for periods far longer than their intended use

Homeless, And Often Sleepless Too

4 in 10 report insomnia, survey reveals

Asthma and Insomnia

A high number of patients with asthma have insomnia, as well, study finds.

Study Finds Genetic Link Between Sleep Problems and Obesity

Restless legs syndrome, schizophrenia also have biological ties to sleep disorders, research suggests

Web-Based Help for Insomnia Shows Promise

Interactive program aims to build better sleep habits, researchers say

Sleep Troubles, Heart Troubles?

American Heart Association says it's too soon to say what's the optimal amount of shut-eye

Sleep Is Key to College Success

Deprivation can make you cranky and sick, and take a toll on your GPA, sleep specialist says

Brain Relies on Two Timekeepers for Sleep

Study shows internal clock and hourglass may sometimes be at odds with each other

Sleep Disorders 6 Times Higher Among Veterans

Post-traumatic stress disorder increases the risk even more, study shows

Antidepressants Not Just for Depression Any More

Other uses include insomnia, pain and anxiety, researchers say

Desperate for Shut-Eye?

Physicians' group recommends cognitive behavioral therapy before drugs for insomnia

Sleepless Nights Linked to Brain Changes in Study

People with insomnia said to have more white matter abnormalities

The High Price of Untreated Insomnia

Not getting medications, therapies for condition costs about $100 billion a year, researchers report

Sleepless Nights Might Raise Women's Type 2 Diabetes Risk

Insomnia can disrupt hormones, and may play a role in developing the blood sugar condition, expert says

Interrupted Sleep Not Good for Your Mood, Study Suggests

Those who slept fewer hours, but without disruptions, felt more positive the next day

Less Sleep May Mean Less Sex After Menopause

Women who reported insomnia were less sexually active, study finds

Talk Therapy May Help Ease Insomnia, Even With Other Health Woes

Study found cognitive behavioral therapy led to twice as many people getting a good night's sleep