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Insomnia Treatment Overview

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Care Plan


First steps to consider

  • Mild to moderate insomnia may be treatable with at-home strategies.
  • Changing your bedtime routine, limiting screen time, limiting caffeine, keeping a sleep schedule, and changing other daily habits may improve your sleep.
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When you may need a provider

  • Insomnia doesn’t improve after about 4 weeks of home treatments
  • Moderate to severe insomnia
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The suppliers listed follow Buoy’s clinical guidelines, but listing the suppliers does not constitute a referral or recommendation by Buoy. When you click on the link and/or engage with these services Buoy will be compensated.

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All treatments for insomnia
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When to see a healthcare provider

Insomnia treatment usually starts with making changes to your sleep hygiene, but if you’re not falling asleep any faster after about 4 weeks of making changes, you should see a healthcare provider.

Also, if you are getting fewer than 4 hours of sleep a night for about a month, you should talk to a healthcare provider or sleep expert for insomnia treatment.

A provider can help figure out what is causing your insomnia, order a sleep study if needed, and prescribe a range of medications that can help with insomnia. A therapist may suggest cognitive behavioral therapy, which has proven to help with insomnia.

Getting an insomnia evaluation

Your healthcare provider may order a sleep study, in which certain bodily functions are measured throughout the night to see if there are any other conditions that are keeping you from getting a good night’s sleep. One common condition is obstructive sleep apnea. A sleep study can be done at home or at a sleep laboratory, depending on the tests.

What to expect from your visit

Your doctor might give you a prescription for a sleep medication. Some medications, like Ambien, are only taken a few times a week at most and only for short periods of time. Others, like trazodone, can be taken on a daily basis.

Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) is a very effective and focused type of talk therapy that teaches you how to identify thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that contribute to insomnia. Therapy can help with anxiety and stress that may keep you from falling asleep.

Prescription insomnia medications

  • Zolpidem (Ambien)
  • Eszopiclone (Lunesta)
  • Zaleplon (Sonata)
  • Trazodone
  • Vistaril

Types of insomnia providers

  • A primary care provider can treat mild to moderate insomnia.
  • A sleep medicine specialist is a doctor who can do additional testing and may be more knowledgeable about insomnia treatment options.
  • A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who treats mental health disorders and can prescribe medications. They may be helpful if you have anxiety, depression, or another mental illness that can cause insomnia.
  • A psychologist or a licensed clinical social worker can offer talk therapy including CBT.
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