Do I Hafe Insomnia

Do I Have Insomnia?
by Anonymous
Do I Have Insomnia?
For about two and half weeks now, I haven't been able to sleep properly. I feel tired at a relatively normal hour, around eleven or midnight, but when I go to bed I can't fall asleep. I lay awake for hours, and then when I do fall asleep I only sleep for an hour or so before waking up again. In search of a cure for my sleeplessness, I decided to research sleep disorders.
Sleep disorders are much more common than I had expected. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, about 60 million Americans per year suffer from some sort of sleeping problems. There are more than 70 different sleep disorders that are generally classified into one of three categories: lack of sleep, disturbed sleep, and too much sleep (1). All three types of disorders are serious problems and can pose a grave risk to the sufferer's health, but because of my problem I have decided to focus my paper only lack of sleep, or insomnia.
To understand why not getting enough sleep was affecting me so much, I needed to understand a little more about sleep. Sleep is a period of rest and relaxation during which physiological functions such as body temperature, blood pressure, and rate of breathing and heartbeat decrease (2). Sleep is essential for the normal functioning of the body's immune system and ability to fight disease and sickness, as well as for the normal functioning of the nervous system and a person's ability to function both physically and mentally (1). Sleep also helps our bodies restore and grow, and some tissues develop more rapidly during sleep. There is also a theory that while the deeper stages of sleep are physically restorative, rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep is psychically restorative. REM sleep also might incorporate new information into the brain and reactivate the sleeping brain (2). These are just a few of sleep's less obvious duties, not to mention that it refreshes us and makes us alert for...