Insomnia

Insomnia is difficulty in initiating and/or maintaining sleep. It is a term that is used often to indicate any and all stages and types of sleep loss. Insomnia is not a disorder, it is a symptom.

There are different kinds of insomnia:

  • Sleep onset insomnia (delayed sleep phase syndrome) – A disorder in which the major sleep episode is delayed in relation to the desired clock time that results in symptoms of sleep onset insomnia or difficulty in awakening at the desired time.
  • Diopathic insomnia – A lifelong inability to obtain adequate sleep that is presumably due to an abnormality of the neurological control of the sleep-wake system. The insomnia is long-standing, commonly beginning in early childhood, sometimes since birth.
  • Psychophysiological insomnia – A disorder of somatized tension (conversion of anxiety into physical symptoms) and learned sleep-preventing association that results in a complaint of insomnia and associated decreased functioning during wakefulness.
  • Childhood insomnia (limit-setting sleep disorder) – Primarily a childhood disorder that is characterized by the inadequate enforcement of bedtimes by a caretaker with resultant stalling or refusal to go to bed at the appropriate time.

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Last Updated: 08-04-2014
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Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.