Cause and Effect Essay: The Causes of Insomnia

Insomnia is a sleeping disorder wherein a person experiences difficulties in sleeping and staying asleep. It can cause difficulties in concentrating, mood swings, and lack of energy. The purpose of this essay is to explain the three main causes of insomnia- psychological causes, physical causes and temporary events or factors (“What Causes Insomnia,” 2002).

Insomnia can be classified as a psychological problem therefore, it has psychological causes. The three psychological causes of insomnia are anxiety, depression, and stress. Anxiety creates a feeling of fear and worry which can disturb a person’s mind, causing that person to constantly think about something which leads to difficulties in sleeping. Stress can also cause insomnia because it is “how effectively a person copes with any emotional, physical, social and economic problems” (“What Causes Insomnia,” 2002). Therefore, a person who is stressed finds it difficult to sleep or to stay asleep. Lastly, depression, a feeling of great sadness, is also a psychological problem that causes insomnia. Difficulties in sleeping are brought about by the negative feelings inside a person. Not only do anxiety, stress and depression cause insomnia, they are also the effects of it. If a person continuously experience insomnia, it can turn into a “vicious cycle” (“What Causes Insomnia,” 2002).

Besides from being a psychological problem, insomnia can also cause problems on the physical aspects of a person. Therefore, it has physical causes as well. Some physical causes include hormonal changes in women, decrease in melatonin, medical conditions, pains, genetics, and other sleep disorders. Medical conditions, such as asthma; pains and hormonal changes in women cause discomfort to people which result in sleep disruption. Decrease in melatonin, on the other hand, is a phenomena which happens as a person ages. Melatonins are hormones that control a person’s sleep. Other than these factors, studies also show that insomnia can be passed down from one generation to the other, but this has yet to be explained by researchers (“What Causes Insomnia,” 2002).

Lastly, insomnia is causes by temporary events or factors. Some events or factors which affect insomnia are jet lag, working the night shifts, medications, environmental noise and extreme temperatures. Jet lag and working late at night can cause a person’s sleeping patterns to change which can cause difficulties in sleeping. While medications can have side effects that can cause sleep deprivation. Environmental noise and extreme temperatures can cause discomfort which can cause a person to have a hard time trying to get some sleep (“What Causes Insomnia,” 2002).

Insomnia is a sleeping disorder that should be treated before it turns into an extreme problem. Even those who get nine hours or so of sleep can get insomnia. As long as there is a feeling of fatigue and drowsiness, you have insomnia. Insomnia depends on the quality of your sleep not in the amount of sleep you are getting (“Can’t Sleep?” 2001). Although there are several factors which causes insomnia, a person can prevent or cure it by becoming a “sleep detective”- fixing his or her sleep routines and lessening stress and anxiety.


I chose this topic for my cause and effect essay because I have this sleeping problem. Not only was I able to enjoy writing this essay, but I also learned new things about insomnia. I was able to understand what insomnia really is. Through writing this essay, I was able to share the new knowledge that I have incurred with others. All in all, I am pretty satisfied on how my essay turned out. It’s both interesting and informative. I would not have it any other way if I were to write it again.


Can’t Sleep? (2001) (Retrieved August 5, 2010) from

What Causes Insomnia? (2002) (Retrieved August 5, 2010)       

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