Sleep issues― Clinical ―

  • Each night, when I go to sleep, I die. And the next morning, when I wake up, I am reborn.

    Mahatma Gandhi

Insomnia affects literally millions of people. It simply means not getting enough sleep. It has been suggested that most of us need between six and eight hours each night, but although you may well have spent a fair bit of time in bed, having insomnia will mean that you have still not been able to get a proper night’s sleep. Your system has therefore not been adequately rejuvenated or recharged, and so it has not had sufficient opportunity to recuperate.

After losing only a single night’s sleep, you are generally able to recover within just a few days. Long-term sleep problems can, however, prove somewhat more stubborn and, in some cases, become debilitating. Tiredness can make daily functioning difficult. It can trigger mood swings and significantly reduce your ability to concentrate.

Insomnia takes various forms. You may find that you have difficulty in getting to sleep, tossing and turning for a long time before you eventually drop off. You may fall asleep fairly soon, only then to wake up too early the next morning. You may find yourself restless throughout the night, with a disturbed sleep pattern. This results in you waking up frequently and prevents you from sinking into a deep, relaxing slumber for any length of time. You may even experience panic or anxiety, without necessarily identifying what exactly is happening to you.

Perhaps you find that, at night, your mind remains unsettled and that you have some difficulty in switching off from its endlessly busy content. The previous day’s issues spin around with little sign of abating. When you do eventually fall asleep, it is through sheer mental exhaustion. You may even find yourself dreaming more than you usually do.

Pain or a medical condition may be a factor, however, it will probably come as no surprise that feelings of stress and anxiety are usually at the root of most sleep disorders, irrespective of the pattern they may take. On the face of it, the causes of insomnia are therefore not usually all that complicated, and should be relatively easy to treat. What can aggravate things, however, is the way the underlying issues tend to manifest themselves. They are usually present on both a conscious and an unconscious level, which can mean that you spend your nights battling not just one, but two levels of your mind.

Because your unconscious mind naturally absorbs the many tensions you face in life, you can sometimes remain strangely unaware of the exact things and situations that end up triggering feelings of fear and stress in you. Over time, these disturbing emotions can become entrenched, and get through to the very deepest regions of your mind, in their turn, causing such issues as sleep disturbance, anxiety or depression.

There are, of course, a number of mind-clearing techniques that you might adopt. For example, it is generally a good idea to write down any worries you have before you go to bed. It also makes sense to list the things you need to remember the next day so not to have them play on your mind over night. Although these are excellent strategies for your conscious mind, it is on occasion necessary to also address the underlying issues lodged deep in your unconscious.

Perhaps you no longer feel notably stressed, you have a comfortable bed, the temperature is just right and there are no distractions to speak of. Still, you end up lying awake. As we have seen, the cause of sleeplessness can be a specific worry or more deep-rooted anxiety. It can, however, also sometimes simply be that a poor pattern of sleep has become a matter of habit.

In time, it is only natural that you might become concerned about an inability to get a good night’s sleep. In some cases, adding a worry about sleep, to insomnia itself, can set off something of a vicious cycle; the very stress brought about by insomnia, making it all the more difficult to drop off. With very little idea of how to handle these symptoms, a person can easily be left feeling bewildered, exhausted and even desperate.

Whatever your situation, hypnosis and its related disciplines can help you to identify and overcome underlying issues. They work with both the conscious and unconscious parts of your mind, healing and reprogramming them in such a way as to have them work with you rather than against you.

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