Falling asleep is a real ordeal for you. Your sleep time can be counted on the fingers of one hand. You feel constantly exhausted and your personal and professional relationships suffer. Rest assured: this article is for you!

By reading our guide, you will finally understand your insomnia, determine its causes and implement concrete solutions to regain restful sleep.

We suggest 5 steps to be implemented gradually to get back to a baby's sleep in just one month!

Insomnia: what to do about sleep disorders?


Advice from our sleep experts on how to calm mental ruminations, wake up at night and find peace of mind

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Diagnostic criteria:

  • Time to fall asleep over 30 minutes
  • Night awakenings
  • Early morning wake-up call
  • Total sleep time less than 6.5 hours
  • Sleep disorders more than 3 days a week
  • Duration of the disorder greater than 1 month

Is insomnia hereditary?

You have been suffering from insomnia for several years and you have the impression that you will never get rid of it? Yes, insomnia is partly hereditary but not only!

Indeed, some people are more prone to sleep disorders than others. Today, the scientific community agrees that the origin of insomnia is partly genetic and therefore hereditary.

For example, Natalie Urfer-Maurer et al (2017) found a link between a mother's sleep quality and duration and that of her children. Children whose mothers suffer from insomnia tend to have less restful sleep and shorter sleep duration than average. Maternal insomnia would thus be a predisposing factor to sleep disorders.

At least 57 regions of DNA are associated with insomnia and 956 genes potentially responsible for the development of this disorder.

In addition, there are genetic factors shared between sleep disorders and certain diseases. For example, restless leg syndrome, coronary heart disease, depression and mental wellness have a genetic similarity with insomnia.

But even if the factors closely linked to insomnia are numerous, they are not definitive and irremediable. The good news is that there are solutions to help you get through it. Follow this guide and you'll get back to sleeping like a baby!

What is insomnia?

Defined as "insufficient sleep in quantity or quality" (1), insomnia has an impact on the daily life of people who suffer from it.

What is annoying about insomnia is that beyond ruining our nights, it also sabotages our days. You have trouble concentrating, you feel sluggish, controlling your emotions is complicated and it impacts your daily life.

It's normal: sleep is a physiological need. It is essential for your physical and psychological recovery.

Signs that you have insomnia

There are several factors to consider when determining whether or not you have insomnia. The time it takes to fall asleep, the number and duration of nighttime awakenings, the total duration and efficiency of sleep, and the persistence of these problems are all factors that distinguish insomnia from occasional sleep problems. If you have at least one of the following criteria, you can consider that you suffer from insomnia.

According to Inserm, 15% to 20% of the French population suffer from insomnia. Almost 1 in 4 people in France are regularly confronted with sleep disorders. But why is insomnia so widespread? What are the causes of your insomnia?

At least 57 regions of DNA are associated with insomnia

Today, there are 8 different types of insomnia

What kind of insomniac are you?

What are the causes of your insomnia? Before looking for a treatment for your sleep problems, it is first important to determine their origins. Stress, anxiety and depression are the main causes of insomnia. However, other causes exist and these can be multiple.

Among these 8 types of insomnia, a distinction is made between primary insomnia and secondary insomnia. When insomnia is due to or associated with other illnesses, it is called secondary insomnia. Insomnia related to a medical disorder or mental illness is therefore a form of secondary insomnia.

Treatments for these types of insomnia are therefore different from those for primary insomnia such as adjustment insomnia or psychophysiological insomnia.

If you suffer from a secondary form of insomnia, it is best to consult a doctor who will be able to guide you towards the most appropriate treatment. On the other hand, if you suffer from primary insomnia, if stress, anxiety, a personal problem or poor sleep hygiene prevent you from sleeping, this guide will be of great help.

Anti-tricks or what not to do when you suffer from insomnia

One of the first things to do when suffering from insomnia is to eliminate our bad behaviors. You know those almost automatic behaviors that interfere with falling asleep and a good quality of sleep: scrolling through your insta feed, looking at the time every 10 minutes, stubbornly staying in bed, etc.

How to overcome insomnia?

Discover our 5 anti-tricks

What to do in case of insomnia? our 5 tips

  • 1. Circadian disorders and disruption of the internal clock

To sleep well, it is important to know yourself well. How many hours of sleep do you need? At what time do you feel tired?
It is by listening to your body that you will be able to get closer to your circadian rhythm.

The circadian rhythm is the internal clock of your body. It corresponds to the biological rhythm within which the phases of sleep and wakefulness follow one another. This rhythm is defined by your genetics but also by your environment. Multiple external factors can lead you to ignore your internal clock and thus deregulate the circadian rhythm.

The disruption of this rhythm can disrupt your sleep and cause sleep disorders. As a result, you are tired during the day and can't sleep at night.

Circadian sleep disorders occur when sleep and wake cycles are not aligned with the day and night cycles. What are the solutions to regain a circadian rhythm?

You can first take advantage of a vacation period to put your alarm clock in the closet. This way, you can identify the time at which you feel the need to sleep and the time of your natural awakening. Two cases can then present themselves to you: you are ahead of your circadian rhythm or you are behind.

  • If you fall asleep early and wake up early, you are ahead of schedule. Increasing your exposure to sunlight and participating in engaging social activities in the evening can help you get back into your rhythm.
  • Conversely, if you fall asleep late and wake up late: you are behind in your phase. Ban all your screens, sources of blue light at least two hours before bedtime and expose yourself to a light therapy lamp in the morning.

Once a circadian rhythm is restored, the key is regularity! Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.

It is also important to take into account the external elements that can negatively influence your internal clock. Food, for example, is a factor that can potentially deregulate your circadian rhythm.

  • 2. Special diet for insomnia and sleep disorders

Nutrition is an essential part of good sleep hygiene. A poor diet can sabotage all the efforts you've made to get quality sleep. Some foods prevent you from sleeping while others are essential for good sleep. Is there an ideal meal to eat in the evening to prevent insomnia?

Tell me what you eat and I'll tell you how you sleep. To sleep well, watch what you put on your plate!

Do not eat too much fat

Eating too much fat during the day can interfere with your sleep for several reasons.

One of the main reasons is that eating too much fat can lead to a reduction in adiponectin, a hormone involved in the regulation of energy metabolism. This can disrupt your metabolism and alter your circadian rhythm.

Have a diet rich in tryptophan

For quality sleep, it is recommended to eat foods rich in tryptophan. Tryptophan is an amino acid necessary for the synthesis of melatonin, the sleep hormone.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of foods rich in tryptophan: cereals and starches (brown rice, oats, soy, sesame, quinoa), dairy products, eggs, meat, fish, dark chocolate, bananas, nuts, etc.

However, tryptophan is more easily assimilated by the body if it is combined with carbohydrates. You can therefore, for example, prepare a gourmet snack rich in tryptophan and carbohydrates (preferably low glycemic index).

Limit fast sugars in the evening

Sweet foods with a high glycemic index can have a negative effect on sleep. Indeed, by increasing the glycemia, these foods induce a rise in insulin. Then, the drop in blood sugar releases two hormones: adrenaline and cortisol, which interfere with sleep.

Limit your consumption of stimulants

Caffeine and nicotine are both harmful for falling asleep but also for the quality of sleep. By consuming these substances in too large quantities and too close to bedtime, you risk delaying your sleep and multiplying night-time awakenings.

  • 3. Better sleep through physical activity

Sport is the ally of your sleep. In fact, many studies show that there is a reciprocal relationship between sleep and physical exercise.

M. Chennaoui et al (2015) explain in particular that the effects of a moderate physical activity on sleep are always positive, regardless of the time of day at which it is practiced.
The National Sleep Institute recommends a progressive, regular and varied physical activity at any time of the day.

However, if you are not used to doing an intensive workout 10 minutes before bedtime, you may want to start by introducing sports gently into your daily routine. For example, you can start by choosing a short, moderate-intensity session on your way home from work.

If you're not a big sportsman: don't worry, the key is to incorporate movement into your day. You can go for a walk in your neighborhood, walk your dog in the nearest park, do some crafts or dance to your favorite music. Simply increase your energy expenditure through a variety of activities, whether they are social, domestic, sports or leisure activities.

The coffee break: good or bad idea?

We explain everything here
  • 4. Hypnosis and sophrology against insomnia

As a substitute or as a complement to conventional medicine, alternative medicine can be an ally for your sleep. Body scanning, body heating or cardiac coherence are all techniques that you can integrate into your daily life to find sleep.

At Mindology we offer a complete support solution co-created with alternative medicine professionals. Pauline Gonse, our sophrologist, and Thibault Gouttier, our hypnotherapist, accompany you through video sessions to help you calm your anxiety, facilitate your sleep and find a deep and restful sleep.

You can find some of our sessions on our YouTube channel by clicking here and all the advice from our experts on the page Our advice.

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They accompany you and offer you concrete solutions,
to get back to quality sleep and put an end to insomnia.

  • 5. CBD to sleep better and reduce insomnia

The benefits of CBD on sleep are numerous: easier falling asleep, longer nights, deep and restful sleep, etc.
Consuming our CBD Broad spectrum oils can therefore be an excellent decision to make your insomnia a distant memory!

At Mindology we have designed an oil whose formulation is specifically developed to address sleep issues. CBD combined with hazelnut oil and lemon balm makes our Good Night Oil a valuable ally for your sleep.
Lemon balm relieves anxiety, helps to fall asleep and regulates sleep cycles while hazelnut oil, rich in omega 9, plays a role in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Our Good Night box can also be a great gift idea for a loved one whose nights are a real nightmare. You will find our Good Night sublingual oil in 5 ml format as well as our Good Night infusion: the perfect duo against insomnia!

Ending your insomnia will not happen overnight. Indeed, the path to quality sleep is complex and full of pitfalls. This is precisely why we have created this guide: to accompany you on your way, to give you the keys to understanding your insomnia and to help you find the solutions to respond to it.

Go through this guide gradually. Little by little, focus on your physical activity, review your diet, understand your circadian rhythm, learn about alternative medicine and the benefits of CBD.

Are you back in the arms of Morpheus?

To put an end to your insomnia

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Chennaoui et al, "Sleep and exercise: is there an interrelation?", 2015

Goulet, Practice guide for the assessment and cognitive-behavioral treatment of insomnia, 2013

Urfer et al, "The association of mothers' and fathers' insomnia symptoms with school-aged children's sleep," 2017

Dr. Adrien, "Sleep Move! "Regular physical activity is a guarantee of good sleep.

Klarsfeld,Birman and Rouyer, "The Circadian Clock on Nobel Time, 2018

The French Republic, "Insomnia:
A neurobiological and psychological disorder," 2017

Sleep Foundation, "The different types of insomnia".

Nature Genetics, "Biological and clinical insights from genetics of insomnia symptoms," 2019

Nature Genetics, "Genome-wide analysis of insomnia in 1,331,010 individuals identifies new risk loci and functional pathways",2019


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