2014, Number 1
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ABSTRACTInsomnia is the diffi culty to initiate or to maintain sleep. It also has to do with waking up too early at least for a month. A patient with insomnia has daytime consequences such as fatigue, sleepiness, changes in mood, lose of concentration, as well as changes in his social performance and his family relationships, among others. The relationship between this disorder and physical and mental health is important due to the impact that it has on the quality of life and life expectancy of those who suffer from it. Unfortunately, insomnia usually goes unnoticed or untreated, which contributes to the onset or worsening of psychiatric and medical conditions. This exacerbates the problem of insomnia in the elderly people. In relation to the treatment it is recommended: 1) the search and management of secondary causes of insomnia, 2) a non-drug therapy that includes sleep hygiene measures, 3) pharmacotherapy. It is not recommended to start a treatment with a hypnotic drug without rule out medications or diseases that cause or exacerbate insomnia. It is not recommended the use of narcoleptics, melatonin, antihistamines or long half-life benzodiazepines. The consequences include limitations on activities of daily living, loss of functionality, impaired quality of life, increased morbidity and mortality, as well as the worsening of preexisting chronic conditions.
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