Insomnia Medications

by Valerie Miller
by Valerie Miller

Table of Contents

Insomnia is defined as the inability to sleep or stay asleep for longer periods. Sleep plays a vital role in any individual’s state of health. Each person requires to have 8 to 10 hours of sleep.

But sometimes, a 6 to 7 hours is already acceptable. Lesser hours than these will automatically spell trouble. And having frequent less sleep will pose a risk to one’s health.

In this article, we will touch on the different types of insomnia medications, how to cure insomnia and the insomnia treatments. Read on!

Types of Insomnia

Primary Insomnia

This is the type of insomnia that is not caused by any underlying medical conditions.  The sleep issues are the problem itself.

Secondary Insomnia

Secondary Insomnia means the sleep problems are brought about by other health issues. These can either be an illness, e.g. arthritis, asthma, cancer, depression, heartburns and pain to name a few.

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It might be also due to vices like alcohol or drugs as well as addiction to tea or coffee that are both stimulants. Some medications also play a major role in disrupting sleep.

There are two kinds of secondary insomnia. They are the acute and chronic insomnia.

How to Cure Insomnia?

In order to cure insomnia, the causes, symptoms and types should be evaluated first. There will be tests to rule out the medical problem. You may find online questionnaires to check your own symptoms but a visit to a doctor is the only way to confirm any possibilities of having this sleep disorder.

Upon clinical diagnosis, the sleep specialist will lay down the details of treatments to you.

Insomnia Treatment

A lot of patients with insomnia get to overcome the symptoms and get cured once

all treatments are followed to the letter. Treatment of insomnia varies though. It merely depends on what sort of insomnia to deal with.

Primary Insomnia

Primary insomnia is insomnia itself so the treatment is directly towards the sleep disorder not other underlying health issues.

  • Behavioral therapy
  • Breathing techniques
  • Doing away with negative thoughts by thinking of the positive counterpart of it
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Using the bed for plain sleeping and not watching TV, doing home works or sex

Secondary Insomnia

Acute Insomnia

Treatment is not actually that necessary since acute insomnia is only caused by factors that can be avoided and improved by actions and not medications.

But in cases when the required sleep practices advised won’t work, the sleep specialist will prescribe sleeping pills to take for a short period of time.

Some vitamins that cause drowsiness can also be prescribed. Over the counter sleeping pills are not recommended as they may pose more risk than cure.

Chronic Insomnia

Chronic insomnia is caused by some illnesses wherein the symptoms affect the quality of sleep. Some medications for such health issues also disrupt the sleep pattern.

The doctors would normally focus on treating the medical condition first and prescribe some vitamins that can help induce sleepiness. Below are the treatments that will be given if in case the health problems are treated but the insomnia persisted.

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy. This treatment will aid you in getting rid of depressing and worrying thoughts. This will help you put away any bad routines that keep you awake at night
  • Light therapy. A sleep doctor recommends an exposure to bright sunlight at day for 30 minutes and lights off with a candle lit every night. This kind of exercise takes your body ‘s circadian rhythm back to its normal phase
  • Relaxation exercises. These include biofeedback method, breathing exercises and muscle relaxation. Light massages, stretchings and warm baths are recommended before bedtime to remove the tension and stress of daily life
  • Sleep reconditioning. This means reconditioning your mind and body about sleep. When you enter the bedroom and see the bed, think of it as an object for sleeping and not having sex and other things
  • Sleep relaxation therapy. This therapy includes meditations like yoga, deep breathing and imaginations
  • Sleep restriction. This means restricting yourself to sleep less than the usual 7 to 8 hours to make you feel too tired the whole day. In this way, your body will be prompt to sleep earlier and longer.

Chronic insomnia normally gets cured while the medications are ongoing but it usually comes back after treatments stop. Such recurrence is very rare but it happens.

Other Helpful Things to Promote Good Sleep

  • Practice good sleeping routine
  • Keep off caffeinated foods and drinks in the afternoon especially in the evening. These will keep you up longer and might also cause heartburn and acid reflux.
  • Make a pact to yourself to sleep on a certain time at night and wake up at an appointed time in the morning. Use alarm clock if necessary but put it away from your sight to avoid checking the time while still awake
  • Avoid taking long naps at day no matter how sleepy you may feel as doing so will only keep you more awake in the evening
  • Put away any gadgets when you decide to lie on the bed as these will prevent you from getting to sleep more
  • Exercise in the morning and not before sleeping
  • Try reading books as this induce sleepiness
  • Turn off the lights and use eye mask if lights from outside cannot be avoided

Insomnia medications

In cases where the symptoms remain after the recommended treatments are done, sleeping pills are then prescribed.  Other drugs given for insomnia are anxiety drugs, sedatives and tranquilizers.

A word of caution though, sleeping drugs are habit forming that is why you should discontinue when the doctor told you so.

Never try to cheat your doctor in buying over the counter sleeping pills after you are told to stop taking them as this might do you more harm than cure. Talk to your doctor if insomnia persisted after the series of treatments.

Over dosage of these drugs will lead to balance problems, blurred vision, dizziness, dry mouth and memory loss as well as addiction and dependence on the drugs.

Possible severe side effects would be allergic reactions, facial swelling and hallucinations. Tell your doctor at once if you experience any of these adverse effects.

Wrap Up

Finding ways and treatment on how to cure insomnia starts in locating the best sleep doctor. Do not go to just a general practitioner.  Look for lists of sleep disorder specialists and set an appointment.

It may be hard to cure insomnia at first especially if it’s been going on for months or even years. But, it is always best to try and cooperate with your doctor.

We hope that in this article, we were able to supply you with ample and useful information about insomnia medications, insomnia treatments and how to cure insomnia.

In case, you have questions, comments and suggestions, please do not think twice in contacting us. Enjoy reading!

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