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Insomnia: clinical review


Content developed by MIMS Learning


This resource, updated in 2017, explains the criteria for diagnosis of insomnia and how to help patients to manage the factors that cause it. Key learning points for general practice nurses include differential diagnoses, use of daily sleep diaries, and the role of cognitive therapy, hypnotic drugs and melatonin.


After completing this activity, you should be better able to:

  • Define insomnia and explain this to patients
  • Describe the epidemiology of insomnia and recognise those at risk of it
  • Explain the predisposing, precipitating and perpetuating factors that lead to insomnia
  • Recognise coexisting problems such as obstructive sleep apnoea and restless legs syndrome
  • Diagnose insomnia using the International Classification of Sleep Disorders criteria as a guide
  • Discuss management options with patients


Professor Kevin Morgan, Professor of Psychology, Loughborough University

Updated in 2017 by:

Dr Annemarie Luik and Dr Rachel Sharman, Post-doctoral researchers

Sleep & Circadian Neuroscience Institute, University of Oxford

and Professor Colin Espie, Professor of Sleep Medicine, Somerville College, University of Oxford

This resource is provided at an advanced level by MIMS Learning. Read the article and reflect on what you have learned, then answer the test questions at the end.
Complete the resource to obtain a certificate of completion to include in your revalidation portfolio. You should record the time spent on this resource in your CPD log.