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7 Strange Facts About Insomnia

  • 7 Strange Facts About Insomnia

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    Intro
    Snoring Sleep Apnea
  • Insomnia can be hereditary

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    CREDIT: Sleeping photo via Shutterstock Boy Sleeping
  • Pets and bugs can also suffer from insomnia

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    Caroline Kjall | stock.xchng
  • Social jet lag can be a drag

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    CREDIT: stock.xchng Sleeping Man
  • Sleeping pills are still popular, despite their failure to cure insomnia

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    CREDIT: Teenager photo via Shutterstock teen-girl-pills-120216
  • Women's hormones may play a role in insomnia

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    CREDIT: Sebastian Czapnik | Dreamstime Baby Mom Sleeping
  • In rare cases, people can die from insomnia

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    CREDIT: Derek Jones | Stock Xchng Old Man Sleeping
  • Chronic insomnia left untreated increases risk of alcohol abuse

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    Sleep Disorder
More than one-quarter of people in the U.S. report occasionally not getting enough sleep, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

However, the clinical definition of insomnia, as explained in the psychiatric textbook the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), includes feeling impaired during the daytime or stressed by the condition. The DSM also says that in true insomnia, the symptoms persist for at least a month, and do not occur along with another sleep disorder, mental disorder, medical condition or substance use.

By this definition, about 6 percent of people have insomnia, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Losing sleep has negative effects on health. A 2010 review by University of Rochester researchers found that people who persistently get less sleep are more likely to be in traffic accidents, have higher rates of missed work days, are less satisfied with their jobs and are more likely to get easily irritated.

Here are seven strange facts that help explain why people can't fall asleep.

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