Five Signs You're a True Insomniac

by Martin Reed Patient Advocate

At any given time, roughly 30 percent of individuals are dealing with insomnia. If you, or someone you know, has been having a rough time of it lately when it comes to sleep, it may be time to investigate insomnia as the culprit. If you are experiencing these common symptoms, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor.

Trouble falling asleep

Determine how long it generally takes you to fall asleep. Most people fall asleep within a half hour of going to bed. However, some people cannot fall asleep for hours after going to bed. If sleep doesn’t come quickly, or if you're tossing and turning and dealing with feelings of frustration and anxiety over it, these may be classic symptoms of insomnia.

Not sleeping enough

Most people need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night to feel rested and to be able to function properly. Rarely can a person get by with less than 7 hours and feel rested. But sometimes people go without the sleep they need of sleep by choice – staying up to finish a work project or to watch a show. However, if you are going on 6 hours of sleep or less on a regular basis, it can lead to sleep deprivation and signals that something is wrong.

Interrupted sleep

Another symptom of insomnia is interrupted sleep and getting out of bed. Some individuals have no problem falling asleep, they just wake up frequently during the night and it takes them a while to go back to sleep. Then they find themselves fixing something to eat, watching television, or surfing the Internet. If you find yourself waking up often during the night, know that it is also a classic insomnia symptom.


While it takes most people a little while to shake off sleep and to become fully awake, coffee usually helps things along. Once they become fully awake, normal sleepers feel refreshed. If you're feeling fatigued and tired in the mornings and throughout the day, that is not normal. It is a sign that you are not getting adequate quality sleep at night and may also be a sign of insomnia.

Other telling symptoms

Other tell-tale symptoms of insomnia include feeling sluggish, having slower reflexes, mood changes, feeling more aches and pains and having more headaches, lack of mental alertness, and being impulsive. Others include feelings of depression, anxiety, irritability, have a reduced attention span and poor memory. All of these symptoms can go hand in hand with insomnia.

Martin Reed
Meet Our Writer
Martin Reed

Martin is the creator of Insomnia Coach, an eight-week course that combines online sleep education with individual sleep coaching. His course helps clients improve their sleep so they can enjoy a better life with more energy and start each day feeling happy, healthy, rested, and refreshed. Martin also runs a free sleep training course that has helped over 5,000 insomniacs. He holds a master’s degree in health and wellness education and studied clinical sleep health at the University of Delaware.