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Insomnia (also known as hyposomnia or DIMS - Difficulty Initiating and Maintaining Sleep) is defined as the presence or perception of difficulty going to sleep, difficulty staying asleep, feeling of poor sleep quality, and early termination of sleep (waking up) in the morning. People who have insomnia may get too little sleep, feel the sleep they do get is of poor quality, or they simply do not feel refreshed when they wake up.

Insomnia is very common and can be categorized as acute (short-term) or chronic (ongoing). Occasionally, acute insomnia is experienced with anticipation for an exciting event such as a wedding.

Chronic insomnia lasts for a month or longer. Most cases of chronic insomnia are secondary, which means they are the symptom or side effect of some other problem. Certain medical conditions, medicines, sleep disorders, and substances can cause secondary insomnia.

Primary insomnia is its own distinct disorder and is not a result of some other factor. Many life changes can trigger primary insomnia, including long-lasting stress and emotional upset.

In addition to functional and psychological conditions that cause insomnia, there are also multiple physical conditions or illnesses that can cause insomnia. These include restless leg syndrome, central sleep apnea, fibromyalgia, gastric reflux disease, and asthma.

Insomnia can cause daytime sleepiness and a lack of energy. It also can make you feel anxious, depressed, or irritable. You may have trouble focusing on tasks, paying attention, learning, and remembering. These problems can prevent you from doing your best at work or school.