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Signs You Have Insomnia Like Jennifer Aniston

Trouble sleeping? You’re not alone.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

Actress Jennifer Aniston is opening up about her ongoing struggles with sleepwalking and insomnia. "I think it started somewhere in my 30s or even earlier, but you just don't start to notice the effects of a lack of sleep when we're younger because we're so invincible," says Aniston. "It began as something that I would just accept and then all of a sudden you realize the effects of your lack of sleep and how it affects your day and your work and your mind function and your physique." Here are five signs you have insomnia like Aniston. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.

1

Do I Have Insomnia?

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According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, 30 to 35% of people have brief symptoms of insomnia and 10% have chronic insomnia. "Insomnia is when someone has problems falling asleep, staying asleep or both most nights of the week," says behavioral sleep medicine psychologist Alicia Roth, Ph.D. "If you experience this for less than three months, it's acute insomnia. If it's been more than three months, you're dealing with chronic insomnia."

2

What's Causing My Insomnia?

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"It can be a traumatic event, a mental health problem, a medical problem, a stressful life event — but it doesn't even have to be something bad," says Dr. Roth. "It can be a good thing that just represents change, like starting a new job, moving or anything that disrupts your normal life."

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3

Do I Need Sleep Aids?

Man sitting on bed about to take sleeping pill or night medicine. Suffering from insomnia
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"Sleep aids work by activating the sleep centers in the brain and turning off the wake centers," says Nancy Foldvary-Schaefer, DO, MS. "But you have to be careful. People start to think they must reach for something to get sleep at night. When that happens, medication can turn an acute case into a chronic one. There aren't many long-term studies, so we don't know the effects of being on sleep aids for a long time. Some reports show memory and coordination impairment."

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4

How Can I Improve My Sleep?

Sleeping Couple Being Woken By Mobile Phone In Bedroom
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If you suffer from insomnia, you're not alone—reach out to your healthcare provider and find a treatment that works for you. "Don't spend time in bed trying to fall asleep," says behavioral sleep disorders specialist Michelle Drerup, PsyD. "You'll probably worry about not falling asleep and then learn to associate the bedroom with not sleeping well. What works best is going to bed around the same time and waking up at the same time every day." Drerup also recommends avoiding caffeine close to bedtime, keeping your sleeping environment comfortable, and using your bed only for intimacy and sleep.

5

COVID-19 and Insomnia

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A number of people have reported long-term sleep disruption associated with COVID-19. "In the past year, we have definitely seen an increase in insomnia and sleep disorders across all age groups," says Adrian Pristas, M.D., medical director of Sleep Medicine at Bayshore Medical Center and Riverview Medical Center. "There has been so much to worry about during the pandemic—avoiding the illness, working remotely, helping kids with remote school—and all of these stressors can cause anxiety or depression, which can lead to insomnia." And to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Ferozan Mast
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more
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