Sleep-onset insomnia vs. sleep-maintenance?

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Question from SMT: Hi, I'm a 2-year IDC survivor, 49 years old. I had radiation but no chemo. I'm on tamoxifen and also taking Effexor for hot flashes and night sweats. The night sweats are now almost non-existent but the hot flashes still occur 4 to 10 times daily. The real problem is that I seem to be getting less and less sleep—sometimes my husband says I toss and turn all night. Other times I spend 1 to 2 hours trying to fall asleep at bedtime.
Answers - Helena Schotland Insomnia comes in a couple of different flavors. One is sleep-onset insomnia, where you may have difficulty initially falling asleep. The other is sleep-maintenance insomnia, where you may have difficulty staying asleep. Techniques for sleep-onset insomnia we've discussed. Sleep-maintenance insomnia needs to be evaluated a little bit more closely from a medical standpoint, to see if there are underlying medical issues causing you to wake up. In some patients, this may require a sleep study to further evaluate the sleep disruption.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Sleep Well: Healthy Habits for Good Rest featured Helena Schotland, M.D. and moderator Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about ways to improve your sleep.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in January 2007.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.

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