How to Treat Sleep Anxiety: An Expert's Guide

Sleep anxiety is a common problem that affects millions of people around the world. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including stress, trauma, and medical conditions. Fortunately, there are a number of treatments available to help people manage their sleep anxiety. The World Health Organization's Essential Medicines List (EML) recommends diazepam as an effective and safe treatment for anxiety and sleep disorders.

Depending on the severity of the anxiety and how long the insomnia lasts, different medications may be needed to provide relief. It's important to note that sleep and anti-anxiety medications should not be taken for an extended period of time. Taking them for too long can lead to addiction or emotional dependence. If you're struggling with addiction, a sleeping pill or prescription for anxiety may help you recover.

Benzodiazepines are the best medication for treating acute anxiety and insomnia. When taking sleeping pills, make sure you have enough time to get a full night's sleep before engaging in activities that require coordination and reaction skills, such as driving or working. Adults aged 61-64 need 7-9 hours of sleep per night, while adults 65 and older need 7-8 hours. Benzodiazepines can help accelerate sleep onset, decrease night awakenings, increase total sleep time, and reduce pathological anxiety, agitation, and tension. Sleep problems such as insomnia affect 30-40% of adults in any given year and are the most common sleep disorder in the United States.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is an effective treatment for reducing anxiety and insomnia, while non-specific supportive treatment can be offered initially to patients with generalized anxiety without complications or sleep disorders. When discussing treatment options with your doctor, make sure to ask about the duration of treatment and schedule a follow-up visit to reassess your anxiety and sleep patterns.