Approximately one-third of the adult population worldwide suffers from insomnia each year. Most adults need an average of six to eight hours of restful sleep each night in order to function properly the next day. Without enough sleep, you may experience reduced concentration, irritability, or decreased motor skills and memory. You may also have difficulty performing everyday tasks.

What is insomnia?

Insomnia is characterized by one or more of the following:

  • An inability to fall asleep despite being tired.
  • Waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to fall back asleep.
  • Many brief awakenings throughout the night.
  • The sense of not having enough sleep after a full night’s rest.
  • A light sleep that leaves you feeling fatigued when you awaken.


Insomnia is almost always the result of an underlying condition. Causes of insomnia are grouped into four different categories:

  • Psychological problems such as anxiety, bipolar disease or depression.
  • Events or factors such as certain medicines, high stress levels and jetlag.
  • Medical or biological disorders such as arthritis, allergies or asthma.
  • Conditions that perpetuate insomnia, such as menopause.
  • This is when the pain occurs in more than half of the abdomen.

It can occur with many different conditions or illnesses, and usually is not serious.