Primary Sleep Disorder Treatments

(Also Known As: Sleep Disorders Treatments, Sleep Problem Treatments, Hypersomnia Treatments, Dyssomnia Treatments, Insomnia Treatments)

(Reviewed by: Paul Peterson, Licensed Therapist)

What Kinds of Primary Sleep Disorder Treatments are Available?

The common aim of treatment for primary sleep disorders is to treat the underlying causes of the condition. There is no denying the fact that the major common factor that can cause sleep disorder or sleep disturbance is stress, and the common symptom shared by all types of primary sleep disorders is insomnia. The sleep disturbance experienced by the affected persons can result in distressing conditions, such as impaired social and occupational functioning. Treatment of primary sleep disorder usually revolves around alleviating the symptoms and reducing the triggering factors that cause the sleep disturbance. There are 3 general principles involved in the treatment of sleep disorders: 13

  1. Psychotherapeutic treatment
  2. Medications
  3. Non-somatic treatment

The following are the common treatment approaches for primary sleep disorders.

Non-Pharmacological Treatment/Psychotherapeutic Treatments

  • Behavioral Therapy

Sleep Hygiene (consists of observing good sleeping habits to improve the quality and quantity of sleep)

Relaxation techniques (involves measures that removes or reduces stress from occurring, such as meditation and muscle relaxation techniques)

Stimulus Control (helps persons with chronic insomnia)

Sleep restriction (involves averaging the time spent for sleeping only)

  • Cognitive Therapy

Helps the affected person deal with their emotional distress surrounding the perceived effect of the chronic insomnia.

Coping mechanisms are also taught to help one manage their sleep disturbances.

Pharmacological Treatments

  • Benzodiazepine
    • These help treat the symptoms of insomnia, and helps improve the quantity and quality of sleep.
    • Triazolam, Temazepam, Clonazepam, Estazolam and Lorazepam are the commonly prescribed Benzodiazepine drugs for sleep disorders.
  • Melatonin

The increased secretion of melatonin in the body helps in the circadian rhythm regulation, as well as it helps in regulating the sleep-wake cycles. This is the treatment option for individuals with circadian rhythm related sleep disorders.

  • Ramelteon is the drug prescribed to stimulate the release of melatonin in the body as it helps normalize the circadian rhythm disorders and promotes better sleep.
  • Antidepressant drugs

This is the drug prescribed for sleep disorders with associated depression owing to its sedative properties.

  • Antihistamine drugs

Because of its sedative property this drug is also prescribed to make a person drowsy, however is not ideal for chronic cases of insomnia.

Could You Have Primary Sleep Disorder?

Primary Sleep Disorder Topics

Related Conditions

Dyssomnia – excessive sleepiness, inadequate quantity of sleep, sleeping difficulty, insomnia
Hypersomnia – excessive daytime sleepiness, daytime napping, anxiety, irritability, depression, restlessness
Narcolepsy – chronic sleep disorder, dyssomnia, insomnia, disturbed sleep, cataplexy