Before treating insomnia , your doctor should determine its cause. To do this, he will ask you about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. You may be asked questions about your:
Your doctor will ask whether you have problems initiating sleep, staying asleep, waking up early, or feeling tired despite seeming to sleep for a normal amount of time. To make a diagnosis of insomnia, your doctor will ask if you have:
You may also be asked to fill out a sleep diary, which is a record of your sleep patterns. Your doctor may want to speak with your significant other concerning the quantity and quality of your sleep. Other specialized tests may be ordered depending on what your doctor suspects may be the cause of your insomnia.
In some instance where the diagnosis is not clear, your doctor may order a polysomnogram (sleep study), where your sleep is analyzed during a 1 or 2 night stay in a sleep lab.
Insomnia. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us . Updated July 9, 2012. Accessed August 13, 2012.
Insomnia: quick answers to medical diagnosis and therapy. Access Medicine website. Available at: http://accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aid=3267380 . Accessed November 8, 2009.
National Center on Sleep Disorders Research website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/about/ncsdr/index.htm .
National Sleep Foundation. Sleep talk with your doctor. Available at: http://www.sleepfoundation.org/alert/how-talk-your-doctor-about-your-sleep . Accessed February 11, 2009.
Your guide to healthy sleep. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/sleep/healthy_sleep.pdf . Accessed February 11, 2009.
Last reviewed March 2015 by Marcin Chwistek, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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