In this article on Junior Seau’s suicide, we learn that he had insomnia for years and was a regular user of Ambien. Yet, he apparently still awakened during the night within just a few hours of taking the drug. We’ve published recently on the topic of sleep disturbances and suicidal ideation as well as on the probability of much more severe sleep disorders in patients dependent on hypnotics. Sad to say, but only thru these untimely deaths do we tend to see changes in the way physicians approach the problem of insomnia; and, even then a change in prescribing practice may be temporary. The problem is simply that most physicians prescribing sedatives have little experience in recognizing that insomnia is often just a marker of a much more complex sleep problem, usually a physical one, such as sleep apnea or periodic limb movements. Failing to recognize this distinction often leads to tragedy.
Research on sleep breathing in schizophrenia would add another layer to this idea.
This article is a dramatic summary about the rise of energy drinks. Yet, remarkably not a single word is mentioned on how people gravitate to energy drinks, including caffeine drinks, due to underlying and unnoticed sleep difficulties.