Thousands of people across the country know the feeling of being exhausted at the end of the night and crawling into bed only to find themselves staring at the ceiling and feeling wide awake 45 minutes later. Others fall asleep quickly but wake up after only a few hours of sleep, leaving them feeling exhausted and irritable the next day. While stress is often a culprit in these matters, numerous other possible problems should be considered by those who frequently deal with insomnia.

Depression
Because most people who are depressed feel fatigued most of the time, one would think this mental health disorder would create easy sleeping. Sadly, many of those who are depressed find themselves unable to sleep or wake up often in the middle of the night.

Medications
Many medications have insomnia or difficulty sleeping as a side effect. Drugs, both prescription and over-the-counter, that contain caffeine or other stimulants, including cold medications, break up sleep patterns. Some antidepressants and blood pressure medications disrupt sleep as well.

GERD
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease causes stomach acid to rise through the esophagus causing burning pain in the chest or distasteful irritation in the back of the throat. Some people may not find that the disease causes them pain but instead wakes them up as soon as they are lying on their backs.

Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a dangerous condition that occurs when the uvula, located in the back of the throat, closes over the entrance to the trachea, obstructing breathing patterns. These individuals often snore and may even stop breathing at times. Then they startle awake multiple times each night and feel poorly rested in the morning.

Restless Legs
Those who have restless legs have irritating or even painful sensations in their legs, usually at night, that make them want to constantly move the legs. This can keep them as well as their sleeping partners awake. If you suffer from this, you may consider seeing a neurology specialist, like those at Billings Clinic, and start working towards a solution.

Of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to possible causes of insomnia. Individuals may also want to consider when and how much caffeine or alcohol they drink each day, if they are dealing with chronic health problems and whether their sleep environments are not conducive to restful sleep. Those who cannot pinpoint and solve their causes of insomnia themselves should consult with their family physician or other related health professional.

Author's Bio: 

Emma is a freelance writer currently living in Boston, MA. She writes most often on education and business. To see more from Emma, say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2