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7 Strange Facts About Insomnia

  • 7 Strange Facts About Insomnia

    Snoring Sleep Apnea
  • Insomnia can be hereditary

    bedwetting causes, what causes bedwetting, how to get kids to stop bedwetting, children and bedwetting, why kids wet the bed, constipation, effects of constipation in kids, health, children's health
    CREDIT: Sleeping photo via Shutterstock Boy Sleeping
  • Pets and bugs can also suffer from insomnia

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

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  • Sleeping pills are still popular, despite their failure to cure insomnia

    teenager, drug, pills, addiction, teen girl, children
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  • Women's hormones may play a role in insomnia

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

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

    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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