Examining the Implications of Insomnia
Insomnia is a disorder associated with inability to sleep at night for the required number of hours needed by the body for a healthy living.
The hours of sleep each person needs depend on many factors, including age.
Infants generally require about sixteen hours a day, while teenagers need about nine hours on the average.
For most adults, seven to eight hours per night may be the best amount of sleep.
However, women in the first three months of pregnancy often need many more hours of sleep than usual.
Too little sleep which is less than four hours can be referred to as insomnia or sleep debt.
Insomnia could be as a result of many factors, ranging from physical to psychological, such as stress at work, illness, emotional, discomfort, and noise.
Symptoms of insomnia include low concentration, irritation, general tiredness, memory loss, high body temperature, brain heaviness, dry mouth and dizziness.
It is not limited to a particular race; in fact many people across the world including Nigeria, irrespective of age, class, religion and colour suffer from the condition.
Moreover, the effect of insomnia is enormous on the patient, family and the society at large.
Studies show that sleep deprivation is dangerous, as it affects emotional intelligence, constructive thinking skills, body weight, and the immune system.
Furthermore, insomnia has been identified as a pointer to minor and major psychiatric problems, if left unchecked over a long period of time.
It could also result to high blood pressure, severe depression, trauma and other mental health problems.
People suffering from this condition often find it difficult to contribute positively to the socio-economic and political development of not only their immediate environment but also the nation.
There is urgent need, therefore, to address the situation.
People should exercise regularly to relax their muscles and shed wastes from their bodies.
It is, however, sad to note, that most people suffering from insomnia rely on sleeping pills, which worsen the situation, instead of alleviating it.
Hence people experiencing sleep difficulty should avoid self-medication, as such drugs may have side effects, while long use of such drugs may cause it to eventually lose effectiveness.
State governments should emulate the practice in Ogun State where special units have been set up in health centres across the local governments to treat people with sleep disorder and minor aliments relating to mental health problems.
It is worth mentioning that a sound mind is a sound body, hence the need for individuals to embrace adequate sleep routine to live a stress-free life.