Insomnia: I. Classification, Assessment and Pharmaceutical Treatment*
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Insomnia is a public health problem because of its high prevalence, the risk of hypnotic drug abuse, and self medication combined with alcohol and other nonprescription chemicals. Clinical experience has given rise to a descriptive classification of the insomnias many of which are secondary to medical disease. The information now available allows us to suggest a systematic approach to the assessment of insomnia emphasizing its history, events associated with sleep onset, observable behaviour and experience associated with interruptions in sleep. This paper attempts to organize the present state of knowledge in a format that can be taught to general physicians who deal with the most insomnia patients.
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