Everyone has a sleepless night once in a while, but chronic insomnia could point to a behavioral issue, such as depression or anxiety, with one condition worsening the other, leading to restless nights and daytime exhaustion. Sometimes, improving “sleep hygiene” — such as winding down before bedtime, using blackout shades, and avoiding caffeine or alcohol — can address the issue. Other times, therapy is needed.
“We have psychiatrists well-versed in depression to treat patients with poor sleep,” says Jack Horng, MD, of the Bon Secours Sleep Disorder Institute at Good Samaritan Hospital, a Member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network. “If needed, we send them to clinical psychologists for behavioral therapy and to realign sleep patterns for patients with jet lags, circadian rhythm disorders and shift work disorder.”
People experiencing insomnia or other sleep-related issues should visit a comprehensive sleep center, several of which are available throughout WMCHealth, for an evaluation.