Out of the numerous types of insomnia, chronic insomnia is the worst type that involves condition of diminished or no sleep at all for long periods. The term ‘insomnia’ refers to the condition of diminished sleep. Physiological, emotional and psychological causes contribute to the hazard of chronic insomnia. The various causes of the disorder include diseases like arthritis, kidney, respiratory and heart problems apart from depression being the biggest factor. Other causes include Parkinson’s disease, hyperthyroidism, asthma, sleep apnea, stress and excessive caffeine intake.
Treatment method for Chronic Insomnia
The treatment plan of chronic insomnia comprises of diagnosis as well as uprooting of the original physical and mental causes. By controlling or stopping the causes that lead to chronic insomnia, the disorder can be treated. Another potent way of treatment is the short-term usage of sleeping pills in due consultation with the physician. The prolonged usage of the same can exacerbate chronic insomnia by inducing drug addiction.
Behavioral treatment of Chronic Insomnia
Chronic insomnia can also be dealt with by using certain behavioral techniques. These techniques comprise of relaxation therapy, reconditioning, sleep restriction therapy and exposure to bright light.
- Relaxation therapy: The therapy is intended to treat chronic insomnia by means of alleviating the anxiety, stress and tension acting on the human frame. Since the relaxation therapy takes place over an extended magnitude of time and hard-work, the end result is the attainment of mental relaxation (peace). This peace of mind wards off unwanted insomnia.
- Reconditioning: This therapy involves dealing with chronic insomnia by proper re-conditioning of the sleep according to the bed layout and time of sleep. This methodology involves using the bed only for sleeping purposes rather than any recreational activities. However, the patient is restricted from going to sleep in the wake of sleepiness. Napping during the day time is also not allowed.
- Sleep Restriction: Sleep restriction therapy is employed for sufferers of chronic insomnia by way of cutting down on sleep time during odd hours so that the insomniacs can get due sleep at the required time. One of the reasons for diminished urge to sleep is the habit of relaxing in the bed rather than having a deep sleep. This technique of restricting the easy hours of sleep enhances the original urge to sleep, thus wiping off chronic insomnia.
- Exposure to Bright light: The exposure to bright light helps to tackle chronic insomnia by re-setting the biological clock so that the insomniac wakes up at regular morning hours by such bright exposure. However, this therapy should be employed in the observation of an expert behavior therapist.