Austrian Counselor & Psychologist – Diana Nahas – answers a patient’s question regarding Sleeping Disorders. ‘Ask Your Doctor’ is a GNC Facebook initiative that gives our fans the possibility to get their questions answered by our professionals; for free.
Can I go crazy from lack of sleep? I have severe sleeping problems. The nighttime scares me already during the day. I am so afraid not to be able to fall asleep which makes me nervous and tense. When I am lying in bed – not able to sleep – I have the feeling to go crazy.
As you say, there a several types of sleeping disorders: insomnia, narcolepsy, sleep apnea, somnambulism, you name it. But the results of the different sleep disorders are the same: they strongly affect our everyday life. In what I hear out from your message you have developed a ‘fear to fear’; in other words, you fear the moment and the fear of not being able to fall asleep at night.
In majority of the time, sleeping disorders are caused by psychological rather than physiological elements. Nevertheless I recommend consulting first a neurologist to eliminate any physical cause such as sleep apnea (the absence of breathing) or the compulsion to sleep during daytime.
The difficulty to fall asleep occurs generally when we are submerged by worries. When it becomes permanent, it could be a sign of an anxious temperament.
Individuals who suffer from sleeping problems complain from a strong anxiety which keeps them awake to an extent that sleeping becomes a challenge, an obsession, which in return leads to an obstacle to fall asleep. Insomnia can also be a symptom of worries that are eventually buried in the unconscious. It is almost always the case for those who awake several times during the night without apparent cause.
As you say, your sleeping problems make you tensed and nervous. Don’t wait too long to seek support from a psychologist to assess your situation. A therapy could help to modulate the fears and anxiety and helps progressively to return to a more pleasant sleep.
And sometimes changes in your environment and lifestyle can be enough to restitute your sleep!
All the best,
*Names are changed due to confidentiality reasons