Sleep Fact Sheet
Introduction to Sleep
Poor sleep can be very frustrating and disruptive, often presenting with difficulty falling asleep or waking up during the night. This can often result in you feeling tired and unrested the following day. A study by Ohayon (2002) revealed that 8% to 18% of the population has dissatisfaction with sleep quality and quantity.
Most people will experience sleep problems during their lives, with episodes of insomnia thought to affect 1/3 of the UK population (NHS-Choices).
Insomnia is defined by difficulty falling or staying asleep, early awakening, or a sensation of unrefreshing sleep (Merk, 2014). It is not a disease and can have many different causes ranging from short term emotional stressors such as worry with work or changing of jobs or environment; physical disorders such as pain conditions like arthritis, cancers, discs etc, to mental health conditions such as depression or anxiety.
How to Manage sleep
Management of insomnia according to NICE guidelines (2015) may include:
Identify the causes of insomnia if possible.
Advise no driving if you’re feeling sleepy.
Provide advice on good sleep hygiene.
Hypnotic drugs may be prescribed short term depending on individual cases with further review.
Referral to psychological services or for cognitive therapy.
What can we do to help?
Below are a list of services we offer that may be able to help you with supported evidence.
(1) Chang, A et al (2014) Evening use of light-emitting eReaders negatively affects sleep, circadian timing, and next-morning alertness. http://www.pnas.org/content/112/4/1232.full.pdf
(2) Knapton, S (2015) Brush your teeth in the dark to help sleep, says Oxford University neuroscientist. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/11966259/Brush-your-teeth-in-the-dark-to-help-sleep-says-Oxford-University-neuroscientist.html
(3) Nilsson R (2013). Pictures of the brain’s activity during Yoga Nidra. http://www.yogameditation.com/Articles/Issues-of-Bindu/Bindu-11/Pictures-of-the-brain-s-activity-during-Yoga-Nidra
(4) Abassi et al (2012) The effect of magnesium supplementation on primary insomnia in elderly: A double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. J Res Med Sci. 17(12):1161-9
(5) Sick SM et al (2011) Preliminary examination of the efficacy and safety of a,standardized chamomile extract for chronic primary insomnia: a randomized,placebo-controlled pilot study. BMC Complement Altern Med.
(6) Ngan A, Conduit R (2011) A double-blind, placebo-controlled investigation of the effects,of Passiflora incarnata (passionflower) herbal tea on subjective sleep,quality. Phytother Res.
(7) Spence et al (2004) Acupuncture increases nocturnal melatonin secretion and reduces insomnia and anxiety: a preliminary report. J Neuropsychiatry Clin Neurosci.