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515 Main Street, Olean, New York 14760
(716) 373-2600

Olean General Hospital

INSOMNIA

 

Insomnia is a lack of sleep that occurs on a regular or frequent basis, often for no apparent reason. How much sleep is required seems to vary from person to person, although 7.5 hours of sleep is about average. Some people do well on four to five hours of sleep while others need nine to 10 hours of sleep each night in order to feel well rested and function adequately.

Insomnia can affect not only your energy level and mood, but your health as well because sleep helps bolster your immune system. Fatigue, at any age, leads to diminished mental alertness and concentration. Lack of sleep caused by insomnia is linked to accidents both on the road and on the job. Insomnia may be temporary or chronic. Some of the symptoms of insomnia include:

  • Inability to get enough sleep at night
  • Difficulty falling asleep at night
  • Waking up during the night
  • Waking up too early
  • Waking up feeling tired, even after a full night's sleep
  • Daytime fatigue or sleepiness

Daytime irritability Insomnia can sometimes be difficult to diagnose because of its subjective nature. A sleep test at our sleep center can often help diagnose the cause of sleeplessness. Our team can monitor and record a variety of body activities during the night, including brain waves, breathing, heartbeat, eye movements and body movements. Taking prescription sleeping pills, such as zolpidem (Ambien), eszopiclone (Lunesta), zaleplon (Sonata) or ramelteon (Rozerem), for a couple of weeks until there's less stress in your life may help you get to sleep until you notice benefits from behavioral self-help measures. The antidepressant trazodone (Desyrel) also may help with insomnia. Doctors generally don't recommend prescription sleeping pills for the long term because they may cause side effects, and developing your ability to sleep without the help of medication is the goal. In addition, sleeping pills can become less effective after a while. Over-the-counter sleep aids contain antihistamines to induce drowsiness. This may be OK for occasional sleepless nights, but these drugs too, often lose their effectiveness the more you take them. Many sleeping pills contain diphenhydramine, which can cause difficulty urinating and a drowsy feeling in the daytime.

Sleep Disorder Center
Restless Legs Sleep Studies
Learn more about sleep disorders.
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Sleepiness Scale Sleepiness Scale
Take the Epworth Sleepiness Scale.
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