Are you having a disturbed sleep? Do you stay awake all night? Well, you may be suffering from a very troublesome and frustrating condition called insomnia. Insomnia can be caused due to many reasons, but researchers have found a possible connection between the hormone called DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone and quality of sleep. So can DHEA supplements help get rid of insomnia? Read on to know if DHEA supplements can relieve your sleep issues.
Can DHEA Supplements Help Get Rid Of Insomnia?
DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone is a hormone, which is produced by the adrenal glands. DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone helps the body make the sex hormones called androgen and estrogen. DHEA is also produced synthetically from wild yams and soy for use as dietary supplements. The production of DHEA in the body decreases with age. DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone is often used to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and to improve cognitive functioning. However, there are other possible benefits of DHEA as well, like improving the quality of sleep and getting rid of insomnia.
Some people use DHEA supplementation for its purported muscle and energy-enhancing effects, although there is not much evidence to support the claims of its effectiveness. However, some researchers have found that low levels of DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone can affect sleep quality and that DHEA supplementation can offer certain benefits to patients with insomnia. Studies suggest that DHEA administration increases rapid eye movement sleep.1 This can help get rid of insomnia, although it needs to be studied in detail.
There are 2 forms of insomnia, namely primary and secondary insomnia. Primary insomnia is a condition in which sleeping difficulty is a problem in itself, not related to another medical condition. Contrary to this, secondary insomnia, the commonest type, results from conditions like anxiety, depression, Alzheimer’s disease or any emotional, psychological or neurological disorder. According to experts, the symptoms of insomnia can lead to a feeling of tiredness during the day, lack of attention or concentration and diminished energy levels.
However, if DHEA supplements can help get rid of insomnia, it will be very beneficial for the management of insomnia.
How Can Insomnia Be Treated?
Doctors generally suggest lifestyle changes like establishing a regular sleep routine and avoiding substances like alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine, which can interfere with sleep. Some people use natural remedies, like DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone, for getting rid of insomnia. However, substantial evidence is not available to support this benefit of DHEA.
It was seen in a study that DHEA supplementation produced an increase in REM or rapid eye movement sleep. This shows that DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone supplements can prove beneficial, especially for people suffering from age-related dementia, since REM sleep impacts the memory. It is also noted that low levels of DHEA reported high levels of insomnia. However, not much evidence is available to support the effects of DHEA on insomnia in the general population.
Outlook on DHEA Supplementation for Treating Insomnia
If DHEA supplements help in getting rid of insomnia, it can be promising. Particularly, if used with other lifestyle measures and proper sleep hygiene. But it is advisable to use it only as advised.
Although DHEA supplementation can offer some benefits for insomnia, one should not use any herbal or dietary supplements to self-treat any symptoms. Insomnia is a very common condition. Moreover, secondary insomnia, which is related to some primary medical conditions is more common. Often, people suffering from medical conditions are prescribed medicines and given specific diet and lifestyle advice. While DHEA supplements may help in getting rid of insomnia, it is necessary to consult your physician before taking them, to avoid interactions with other medicines.
DHEA is already known to be helpful in many health conditions, including nerve and brain health. Hence, if it helps to soothe the mind and body and get rid of insomnia, many patients can experience a difference in their health. However, it is necessary to follow medical advice, as regards the usage of DHEA supplements for insomnia, its indications for your health condition and the right dosage.
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