I recently had an encounter with a client, Joan, who was having trouble sleeping at night. Her insomnia had become so debilitating, that she had to quit her job due to fatigue. She tried a lot of possible remedies (she adopted new sleeping habits and even used sleeping medications), but nothing seemed to work.
When Joan shared with me important details in her life, we were able to unravel the underlying cause of her insomnia. She was going through a lot of difficulties including a recent divorce and death of an aunt. Joan was suffering from depression. While Joan didn’t directly associate her sleeplessness with her current emotional struggles, it was apparent that depression was the fundamental cause.
A study by the Psychiatry Department of the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine reveals that as many as 90% of patients with depression suffer from poor sleep. Furthermore, about two thirds of patients with major depressive episode will experience insomnia. The study also shares that sleep problems usually emerge either as a symptom of depression, or a side effect of a treatment used.
Dr. R. Robert Auger, a sleep specialist shares, “If you were to follow patients suffering from sleep disorders and with no history of depression, they would be four times more likely to develop depression compared to individuals with no history of insomnia.”
For therapists, the numbers in this study are alarming. This means some people who are suffering from depression and insomnia may not be getting all the treatments that they need. Thankfully,there is a highly effective cure for insomnia which could prevent the person from plunging deeper into depression.
Treating Insomnia to Improve and Avoid Depression – or the Other Way Around
While sleep medications allow you to sleep at night, it doesn’t put a complete stop to the pattern. If the underlying cause is not treated, you might just end up on a medication loop and eventually have this interminable dependency on sleeping pills, which could even be more detrimental to your whole well-being.
Cognitive treatments including counseling and hypnotherapy are one of the best ways to treat insomnia.
Self-hypnosis techniques will help you become more focused and will help your brain relax and be ready for sleep.
For people like Joan, self-hypnosis techniques could put an end to their lingering insomnia, making them sleep within minutes and stay asleep through the night till morning. Being in a sense of relaxation is empowering and liberating and getting enough sleep prepares you for the new day ahead with enough energy to battle day-to-day stress.