Insomnia: What to do when you can not sleep?

In the process of sleep a change occurs in the content, as well as images that form the elements that appear in the dream. It is known that this content has to do with events during the day or with concerns that exist in everyday life and the problems we are facing. When that dream, that manifesto in veiled form on the sleep mode does not appear in disguised form, changed, but that has to do with ourselves, and can not change (disguised) some aspects as what happens to us too emotional, or has a particularly traumatic burden for us, and that is precisely why it is not possible for our psyche find items to this change, this disguise, that’s when produced “nightmares”.

It is very common in children who exhibit these commonly called “bad dreams” but there is much in his sleep adults have the presence of this alteration in the normal sleep and sleep-altering normal; I’m talking specifically about nightmares and night terrors.

Within these dreams commonly called “bad” “ugly” or scientifically called “parasomnia” are somnambulism (sleepwalking), previously appointed night terrors, the somniloquy (talk about night sleeping), bruxism (involuntary teeth grinding) and it is also considered to nocturnal enuresis (wetting while you are asleep) and nightmares.


Image Source: Google Image

At NIGHTMARES then they are considered behavioral events that occur or during sleep or upon awakening. As for the prognosis, it is always positive because if they occur in childhood, adolescence yield. These occur during the REM (rapid eye movement), which is the part of sleep where dreams occur.

In adults usually they occur at any time of life, at any age, and sometimes during the night are repeated.

And if it is true that as to the causes there are no elements from genetics to regard as crucial to the production of nightmares in children, if there are a number of factors that combine these being:

  • Predisposing factors: When there is a history of any of the previously named parasomnia in either parent or both.
  • Trigger factors: Lack of sleep occurs repeatedly, when you’re studying a disease (which commonly present with febrile), problems in the family, the birth of a new baby, moving house, separating parents, etc.
  • Factors that chronic insomnia prolonged in time: When any of the previously named factors is not modified and perpetuated over time.

The insomnia

Insomnia is the inability to sleep “a number of regular hours” or “for these.” The person who suffers often complain that they can not sleep when you lie when it does it’s been several hours since he went to bed. Or lie on normal schedule and after a couple of hours sleep wake up with the feeling of having slept enough, look at the clock, but it’s only been two or three hours or even less, try to fall asleep again and this costs a lot coming to do it in the nearest time to be up to their obligations (work, study, care for children, home, etc.). And this phenomenon is repeated until the person becomes aware that he has a problem and that’s when consultation.

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: Four Ways to Improve Self-Esteem

As for the causes of insomnia they can be psychological, psychiatric, physiological (fibromyalgia is commonly associated with insomnia, because the sufferer is frequently complain of difficulty falling asleep, the intense feeling of discomfort and pain caused him the same disease) and in other cases by the use of drugs. We study the psychological causes.

The insomnia is sleep disturbance, and is the most common reason that this condition occurs. As for the psychological causes that produce it can be: stress, personal problems (family problems, work, social, academic, etc.), depression, anxiety, anorexia or any other psychological disorder. Also the consumption of certain drugs such as psycho stimulants, antidepressants, and corticosteroids. There may also be organic causes such as chronic illness or pain caused by trauma or other origin: it is well known impediment sleep that produces a toothache or ear).

When a person suffers from insomnia I see, it is necessary to make a series of related schedule questions lying down and your schedule to get up (many people feel difficulty in falling asleep, but they have done a nap a few hours before, or have been raised too late in the morning, and there are those who do not have a regular schedule as to bedtime), it should be amended before as far as possible (up earlier, not nap if possible and if you feel really tired, sleep a short time and not close to the time of night), also it advised not dine as too abundant although eating foods containing protein; if you make physical activity not be done in very close to the activity of sleep time, as this makes the person is active and then trouble sleeping.


Image Source: Google Image

As for the number of hours of sleep, they are absolutely dependent on each person, because some people need to sleep between nine and ten hours a day, and there are others that just 6-7 hours. They feel they have enough rest and make a completely normal life. There are also differences among age groups: children and young people need to sleep longer, however adults and especially the elderly sleep a lot less. But we can say that the average between seven and nine hours (although some studies relate the average six to seven hours of sleep a longer life.

So who suffer from insomnia often complains:

  • Has trouble sleeping.
  • Often at night he wakes, and then not go back to sleep until well near the hours that should rise to their daily activities.
  • In other cases, you wake up already near the morning, but earlier than it should be, usually a couple of hours and not fall asleep again.
  • Usually it tells you sometimes feel you are asleep, but his dream is not exactly deep and restful , and then in the morning not feeling rested, quite the contrary.

So if we took so that those who suffer from insomnia we have, we can say that Insomnia is the perception of the person to have an insufficient sleep or what manifests as inability to sleep.

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: Techniques to Reduce Anxiety

Considering the adult population we can say that there are surveys that speak of up to 48% of this age group at some point have suffered from insomnia. It goes without saying that if we take into account those who turn to medication, this is one of the main causes of consumption of psychotropic drugs.

We say that a decision by chronic insomnia, you’re more than three weeks in its manifestation. Otherwise acute insomnia is produced by stress, illness or drug also.

In other situations insomnia is caused by the so-called daytime sleepiness, which is very common in the elderly.Usually it caused by depression, sedentary lifestyle, etc.

Insomnia is:

  • Casual or temporary when you have a recurrence ranging from one to several nights.
  • Short term or acute when fails to three weeks, and
  • Chronic when it exceeds three weeks.

Always the first two produces something outside the body, other circumstances affecting the person. But chronic insomnia, always complex elements in their formation and maintenance.

Causes of Insomnia

Insomnia may occur by reason of aging:

  • When a person ages has reduced total sleep time
  • The effectiveness of this dream is not the same
  • He wakes up more often at night
  • Is daytime sleepiness
  • In the elderly you can also verify that you have greater frequency and duration of periods of wakefulness
  • REM is stable
  • The non-REM (deep sleep) phase gradually decreases with aging
  • That is why the elderly have less sleep
  • Their watches are more frequent and longer
  • Nighttime sleep is lighter.

Causes of chronic insomnia

It is very common for those suffering from a longstanding illness, symptoms manifest overnight affecting a deep, restful sleep.

Always in the first interview with those who come to the consultation by insomnia, we must remember that they are very important data that gives us both he and his family related: what it sees it as “difficulty falling asleep, difficulty to keep or also wake up before convenient or desired time, unable then sleep again, “that is what is at issue is to make an accurate medical history so that the elements overturned in it, have a complete concept insomnia how it manifests itself in the patient, and then formulate the appropriate strategy. Any data you provide us is important in terms of providing a history of your sleep or lack of it. It is time you go to bed, you are what you eat, if you do or not, your daily routine, habits when going to bed. If you wake up during the night, if often or sometimes, history of psychopathology, whether any depression or investigate symptoms that can cause me to suspect that at this time is cursorily, anxiety, if drug use, alcohol, psychotropic drugs. It is important the presence of a family that we can tell if the patient snores, if you have nightmares (this is what he asked). We note that in elderly insomnia etiology is probably multifactorial.

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: The first consultation with a psychiatrist or a specialist in anxiety

Night terrors, what are they?

So-called night terrors are those who act out a cry of anguish, after which the person wakes up anxious, and sometimes agitated, sweaty. Not remember if there has been a dream to produce this, it is common to children occur. Night terrors usually occur on a recurring basis.


Image Source: Google Image

When reiterate, that causes discomfort to the sufferer is reflected both in terms of family and social or labor, and such is the way in which it affects the person feel that in many ways his life has changed. When this repetition happens then we can speak of a disorder.

As I said previously they usually suffered by children, but usually occurs in adults. When a person awakens from this episode palpitations, sweating, breathing quickens, your heart rate may increase to four times more than usual.

The person feels terror, or very acute fear, and not seldom also rises screaming and those around him come to his aid notice that is in a state of great confusion (and while it may seem awake sometimes, it is not).

That is why their families should be aware that even if your eyes open is not fully awake. And there are few times when horror after he disappears, the person back into a deep sleep, morning does not remember anything that happened the night before, and remember if they had not had a dream that would cause the episode.

While the causes that produce it are not known, usually seen in sufferers elements that are consistent with stress, sleeplessness, fever and also very filling meal prior to sleep.

A curious fact is considered that this occurs at the stage 3 or 4 sleep, when the mind is blank, then becomes a mystery that these episodes of night terrors occur.

We can say in terms of numbers the “night terrors” are much more common in children than in adults. (From 1 to 6% they occur in children, at some point in the child’s life). And a curious fact is more common in boys than in girls. It occurs between the age group ranging from 3 to 12 years old and the highest percentage between 3 and 5 years.Then upon reaching adolescence it disappears. There is no evidence to link these night terrors of children with psychological problems.

Considering the adults in these episodes occur, usually begin between 20 and 30 years (usually continue from childhood, that at some point as children took place, then they stopped giving and upon reaching age aforementioned adult, occur again) there is no difference in the percentage at this age for sex.

Another significant fact is that in adults are associated with other psychological disorders, stress, post-traumatic stress disorders, anxiety, and other personality disorders.

It is common that people who have relatives with a history of night terrors or sleepwalking, have a chance of up to 10 times higher than someone who does not have that take place in the latter episodes.

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: Guide for Anxiety – What is anxiety?

When need consultant?

Call your counselor if the child has multiple episodes every night for several nights, if the episodes are repeated every night for several weeks or if they in any way affect the child’s activities whether social, family, school, etc.

When we talk about night terrors we’re talking about nightmares?

In both we are talking about bad dreams, waking up anxious and agitated. But who has had a “nightmare” remember that dream, then it makes it hard to remember back to sleep. Instead the “night terror” the person does not remember the dream, and the feeling of fear which prevents him back to sleep.

Being having a nightmare makes who is dreaming to wake up just in time prior to the scariest part of the dream.

As for the body movement during the nightmare the person hardly moves, or does a much lesser extent than in a night terror, and it is difficult or rarely arrive with their movement out of bed.

Another feature nightmares occur during REM sleep phase called instead night terrors occur in stages 3 and 4 sleep.


As I said previously, if not frequent episodes, plus they do not disturb the normal life who has them, just observe and no treatment is necessary only hope that no longer exist. You can take precautionary measures such as arrange the furniture and items that may harm you if out of bed asleep and can be carried forward and hit something (bed away from windows, for example).

And if a child quine have this problem, try not to attach too much importance to, and make him understand that it is common to this and it will soon cease to occur, they are not worried as well and consequently they forget the episode without giving too much importance.

Usually when parents consult concerned, he is made to see that this is serious according to repetition and systematization of the episode. If this is not repeated on an ongoing basis, they are given to understand that not to worry and just wait out. Only psychotherapy is recommended for children whose frequency and consistency of the appearance of the episode affects your normal activity.

In adults the same when they come to the consultation concerned about the causes or reiteration, a short psychotherapy, brief focused on the episode itself, unless they are episodes that disturb much the person, then yes it is treated is recommended.

Forecast: In most children who have night terrors, they disappear at puberty or adolescence, and do not need treatment. In adults instead psychotherapy and realize what are the overstress in order to avoid them and thus also prevent the production of night terror. Also they decline with age in adults, since the phase in which it is the episode of sleep, also decreases with age occurs.

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: A grateful person is a happy person

Treatment of insomnia

Behavioral- cognitive psychotherapy Gestalt therapy with or without therapy Hypnosis (hypnotherapy).

When a person begins to feel the reiteration difficulty sleeping, when you feel that insomnia is taking over your life slowly, very negative as to eliminate or banish all kinds of ideas or misconceptions related to it as well the concern he feels that happen again again when going to bed, as well as customs or habits that impede a good sleep, such as the gymnastics in near sleeping schedule, eating plenty and indigestible meals, play video games with violence or about incentive’s CNS.

When previous is produced or enhanced by any psychological disorder such as depression or any anxiety disorders, which itself already serve to cause insomnia, and if these are also increased by worry or difficulty about augmentative ideas, then we insomnia persistently and repeatedly making.


Image Source: Google Image

In the cases previously cited a psychological psychotherapy helps a lot. For insomnia learned behavior it is modified, and also because it helps change the way concern, preoccupation anticipation that occurs before the time of going to bed and that predisposes precisely for not being able to sleep.

What makes the psychotherapist in these cases is to teach the patient to solve the specific problem that afflicts and which has become insomniac, and also teaches stress management and anxiety.

When a person suffers from insomnia feel that is installed in your life one way and wrong way to sleep and forever, and feel this so that during the first session must already begin to break down prejudice in the East, it is necessary to make knowing that much of the repetition of your insomnia is precisely their fear and the firm belief that is in it, that insomnia is here to stay and it is very difficult or impossible to modify and fix this.

Then teaching ways to relax, learn in the office to handle your body and mind, hence his thoughts. With psychic imagination mentally you are taken to a place or site that has the features to make you feel totally relaxed, at ease and not anxious, but quite the opposite.

Once learned this in the office, you will be directed to drive you to practice before bed, and made to see that there will be many times when you start the relaxation process and without having finished and is completely asleep (for Furthermore it is common also to sleep in the office).

If in addition the session with Hypnosis Therapy is applied, they will make suggestions as to who will sleep deeply and will not wake up, but at the time you need for your activity. This will listen in awe before the hypnotherapy session, then during the same both convinced they have been able to prove what is the state of relaxation and tranquility in the hypnotherapeutic process that has been achieved, when you also make suggestions that this state it will achieve by itself, and when you need it, and apply it at home then do so, view the result and comes fully convinced after it, happy and satisfied with the achievement.

When insomnia is a short time ago, only one or two sessions usually required. If insomnia is much longer, so if a larger number of sessions necessary, will always depend on the person, their age, the level of suffering anxiety or depression, and also the natural ability to change immediately or not, but always it has a positive outcome.

Both when treatment confronts Cognitive conduction psychotherapy, Gestalt therapy with or without hypnosis therapy, treatment usually takes no more than 4 sessions of psychotherapy, during which besides modifying and counter overstress elements, eliminate false Sleep ideas, resolve various conflicts that might be preventing sleep, plus the person receiving treatment, and education necessary to apply in your life since then to change behaviors and also teaches relaxation techniques. Once they practiced these teachings lead a person to get into the habit and conditioning to find sleep quickly once it is time to sleep, and you want to do.

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: 5 Easy Yoga Postures for Reducing Stress and Anxiety

The techniques taught in the Conductive-behavioral psychotherapy and Hypnotherapy Clinic:

There are several including progressive relaxation, also psychic imagination, and self-hypnosis. These techniques which will achieve is to reduce anxiety, stress change, and change behavior as it achieves a new conditioning as learn to sleep and every time you want to sleep applied these techniques learned in the office. Therefore the factor that was previously stressful and conditioned to feel anxiety, now conditioned to feel relaxation and can fall asleep quickly.

It teaches you how to manage your mind so that when it’s time to sleep, if there are any problems or difficulties that occupies his thoughts, these techniques will be applied allow you to leave out of your attention every thought not in accordance with the time sleep, but their thoughts and imagination will be busy applying learned exercises, they will bring your body and mind relaxation necessary and allows you to go into a deep and restful sleep.

Using the psychic imagination (guided imagery) the person learns to guide his mind reassuring images, fantasies previously created and to produce a sweet and relaxed sleep, that it learns in the office and then applied alone at home.

Psychotherapy insomnia to achieve: Changing thoughts

It teaches a person that if those thoughts that assail him when he can not sleep like, “it’s late and I can not sleep I”, “I have so much to do tomorrow and I can not sleep yet,” “I’ll wake up so tired I can not do anything I want “… ..etc.etc.etc again. , To consider and pass those thoughts and not paying attention if they occur and if they do think about “whether I do not sleep, all I know that although they are very few times in my dream, tomorrow I’ll see what I do with my little energy if that happens to me, I’ll see depending on how I feel, I will not worry anymore about not sleeping, and in that again today might not sleep well I should be aware that if I am in bed, also rest, just close your eyes and be silent without thinking about anything, or just thinking about that beautiful beach, quiet and bright, with the clear sea and its warm clear waters, I now feel the warm sun on my body, and fine sand and warm on my feet sink, just seeing these images I know that in addition to calm, rest and relax me, if I can not sleep … I do not care.


Image Source: Google Image

This is an example of reassuring image, I put the sea and the vast, bright and warm beach as people usually choose that image as the very reassuring, but everyone can choose the reassuring image that fit, and the effect is the same, and generally reassuring, and I would say in virtually all cases, the person falls asleep.

As for behavior modification (at the time of going to bed) and therefore take into account the stimulus and modify them.

This is related to that if there have been many nights when the person has suffered from insomnia, it associates everything about it to opposing elements to a good sleep. So it is that change of habits, such as not watch TV in bed, and only find the time in your bedroom exclusively for sleeping (other than a place to read, listen to music, eating, etc.).

You may also like to read another article on AnxietyReduction: The importance of mental strength in health and fitness

Then it is important that even if you have slept little, if any, time to get up is the same. What to do with worrying thoughts ?, i.e. if any, leave the bedroom and think of another place in order to stop associating your bedroom with a place that gives you the significance of producing insomnia.

Another fact that you should not do is sleep during the day., i.e. much they have not slept during the night, he asked the patient to make sleep restriction and even if you are sleepy during the day, lest the bed until it is bedtime.

As for the Causes

Always bear in mind that insomnia, although it is often related to various diseases such as depression, anxiety disorders, etc. They not necessarily occur as a result of disease. Sometimes the causes can be psychological, some people feel that if there has been a history in your family of insomniacs believe that directly happens to them or will do the same, creating a constraint for them so, but in cases as these should always keep in mind that if this is so, with an anti conditioning that is produced by the above techniques, the know surely serves as a great help.

The stress is also recognized as a cause of insomnia or increase it. Difficulties in everyday life, changes in work schedules, changes in home (this usually occurs in children and the elderly), other organic diseases.

When you have to change lifestyles, customs, types of relationships ….
It is well known that alcohol can help win quickly dream, but after you’ve slept immediately after glass of wine or any other alcoholic beverage, shortly after the person I do not wake up sleeping more or does so interrupted, with consequent short rest.

Coffee can interfere with a dream and smoking, both are stimulants. Also various medications.

It is good to have a regular schedule for dormitory available, it regularly makes a conditioned stimulus is believed, when associated with sleep, and it is important at the moment regular bedtime because the body is programmed to feel tired and I dream.

Also, keep in mind that a sedentary life without activity contributes to the lack of sleep at night.

Other causes can be external as intense and persistent noise (passing vehicles), engine noise, machines, etc. Bright light before bedtime and also inside the room delaying affect sleep.

Secondary insomnia

Insomnia is caused by illness or severe pain (toothache, back pain, etc.)

You may also like...