Discuss Factors Affecting Insomnia

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I intend to discuss Primary Insomnia and what research has shown with regard to its causes, particularly the extent to which causation is influences by physiological and psychological factors. Research has shown that Insomnia can be affected by many different things like stress, personality traits, bedtime behaviours and environmental factors, by interfering with the natural progression of brain activity, for example affecting the amount of chemicals like serotonin, noradrenaline and melatonin produced. Environmental stimuli such as bright lights, loud noises, room temperatures and having a snoring companion can affect insomnia because they interfere with the brain’s natural calming down of neural activity, which causes us to be unable to fall asleep. Studies on the effects of light on the sleep wake cycle, for example SIffre’s Cave Study, have shown the importance of light as a zeitgeber acting upon the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus. Recent research has shown that even low intensity light, especially of shorter wavelength, can inhibited the production of melatonin which is thought to trigger sleep. As TV’s and monitors produce light of exactly this character, using a computer or watching TV before going to bed may be a common cause of insomnia. It should be noted however that it is difficult to measure this effect in the real world. It may be the content of TV and computer s which is cognitively stimulating rather than a primarily physiological effect. However, this environmental factors depend on individual differences as one person may be able to sleep in a cold room better than a hot room and another the alternative way around. Regular loud noises may also become comforting to one person if they become used to it, and therefore will be able to sleep through it, whereas irregular loud noises may disrupt another person’s insomnia. This is commonly found in
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