August 25, 2003
Getting enough sleep is important for good health. Insomnia, or disturbed sleep, can lead to problems with concentration, memory, mood and judgement.
If you are experiencing insomnia, it is important to tell your doctor. He or she will look for the cause of your sleep problems before recommending any treatment. Keep a sleep diary with the following information to show your doctor:
Your doctor should also give you a physical exam and blood tests to check for cardiovascular, respiratory or hormonal reasons, especially thyroid function, that may be causing sleep disturbance.
Many people think sleeping pills are the answer to insomnia and your doctor may prescribe them for a short time to help re-establish a pattern of sleeping. However, sleeping pills become less effective over time and can be addictive, so they are not usually recommended on an on-going basis. In addition, they can interact with HIV drugs. There are other things you can do to improve your sleep.
Adapted from HIV i-Base at www.i-base.info/pub/guides/side802/index.html.