Difficulty Falling Asleep

What Causes Insomnia?

Insomnia can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'troubling' to 'very serious'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose insomnia, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "insomnia" as a symptom.  Here are eight of many possibilities (more below):
  • Food Allergies
  • Anxiety
  • Copper Toxicity
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Magnesium Need
  • PMS D
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Chronic Fatigue-Fibromyalgia

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
significant meal-induced pain
meal-induced pain for over a month
temple-based headaches
dark areas under eyes
severe leg/foot cramps
past marijuana use
anal itching
high iodine consumption
having foamy urine
intolerance of both garlic and onion
short-term memory failure
inability to work under pressure
... and more than 160 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of insomnia:
Cause Probability Status
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder 97% Confirm
Chronic Fatigue-Fibromyalgia 18% Unlikely
Anxiety 12% Unlikely
Hyperthyroidism 3% Ruled out
Copper Toxicity 0% Ruled out
PMS D 0% Ruled out
Magnesium Need 0% Ruled out
Food Allergies 0% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate sleeping-related problems, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
Do you have Insomnia (difficulty falling asleep)?
Possible responses:
→ No / don't know
→ Occasionally
→ Often
→ Very often / always
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate either difficulty falling asleep or frequent difficulty falling asleep, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Dehydration

Dehydration can cause insomnia through a variety of mechanisms.  It causes increased heart rate, headaches, body and muscles aches, and anxiety – all of which make it harder to sleep comfortably.  Dehydration also leads to a deficiency of melatonin, which is a major cause of insomnia because it regulates our circadian rhythm (sleep/wake cycle).  Dehydration reduces the amount of tryptophan available to the pineal gland, which produces melatonin.

Drinking ½ a pint to a pint (250 to 500ml) of water about an hour before sleeping will allow most of it to pass through the body and leave enough to run the body's natural processes while sleeping.

Magnesium Requirement

Early symptoms of magnesium deficiency can include fatigue, anorexia, irritability, insomnia, and muscle tremors or twitching.

Concerned or curious about your health?  Try The Analyst™
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