How to Talk to Your Doctor About Your Sleep

Sleep goes hand-in-hand with a balanced diet and an appropriate exercise plan to ensure the body stays healthy and is at a lower risk of chronic disease. Recent data by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that as much as 35% of adult citizens are failing to obtain a minimum of seven hours sleep per night.

Sleep deficiency has many causes, with insomnia being an especially concerning factor amongst the general population. Data from the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine explains that around 30% of the worldwide population suffers from one or more symptoms associated with insomnia.

The first step to overcoming insomnia and better attending to your sleep requirements is to pay a visit to your doctor if you find yourself rolling around at night, with sleep seeming like a distant reality. Being prepared for your visit to a doctor will help you better target your sleep difficulties, and also ensure a better approach to treating your insomnia.

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A Guide to Discussing Sleep Problems With Your Doctor

Preparing for Your Visit

preparing a list

You should make some initial preparations to ensure your doctor’s visit provides for a better outcome. Ensure you know what you need to share with your doctor, including a list of current medication you are taking, and a list of existing medical conditions that you have been diagnosed with.

Insomnia has been linked to stress, endocrine problems, neurological disorders, cognitive issues, and more. Stimulants, such as amphetamines, B-agonists, and caffeine, also have adverse implications on a person’s ability to sleep well. Take any medication you are currently on with you to the doctor’s office and any recent test results that may provide details about recently diagnosed health conditions.

Important Sleep Information to Share With Your Doctor

While at the doctor’s office, a series of questions may be asked to help the doctor determine what the underlying causes of a patient’s insomnia may be. The doctor needs to identify the severity of the patient's insomnia and will try to learn if you are having problems falling asleep or instead of staying asleep during the night.

doctor noting symptoms

Furthermore, the doctor will also need to know if any daytime complications develop due to your sleeping troubles, such as continually being faced with fatigue, or finding concentrating difficult due to the poor sleep you suffer from at a chronic level.

Additionally, you should also mention to your doctor how long you have been experiencing symptoms of insomnia, any type of sleep aid you've use previously and how frequently you experience them. Additional information, such as if your sessions of insomnia correspond to factors such as menstruation cycles, seasons, or other factors, can also help the doctor make a more accurate diagnosis.

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Sleep deficiency can cause hazardous effects on your wellbeing and can be caused by many factors. When signs of insomnia develop, it is essential to attend to the underlying causes. A visit to your doctor's office can help you identify the possible causes of your insomnia and provide a more active approach to alleviating your symptoms.

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