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Sleep Disorders

Sleep Disorders and How They Can Affect You

Sleeping like a baby? A wish for many and one would think that something as natural as sleep would come easily, sadly this is not the case. Sleep  is something that we take for granted, however if you are one of those are affected by disrupted sleep patterns you know how devastating it can be towards your emotional and physical health, and well-being.  We all have a mechanism for sleep; it’s a time for restoring and replenishing the physical body.  It is not fully understood why we sleep as the mind never does, but lack of the right sort of sleep or too much sleep can cause unwanted side effects.

To address disrupted sleep we first have to address the underlying issues and your sleep disrupters’.  It could be the result of the worry or stresses of your life, maybe a health problem, what you ingest, or distractions in your sleeping environment. There is no disputing that poor quality sleep can have a negative impact on your energy, emotional balance, productivity, and health. There is nothing worse than laying in bed experiencing thoughts raising around your mind and unable to switch off so end up clock watching or counting sheep.

Sleeping well is essential to your physical health and emotional well-being. Unfortunately, even minimal sleep loss can take a toll on your mood, energy, efficiency, and ability to handle stress. Ignoring sleep problems and disorders can lead to poor health, accidents, impaired job performance, and relationship stress. If you want to feel your best, stay healthy, and perform up to your potential, sleep is a necessity, not a luxury.

Even small disruptions to your sleep cycle can contribute towards you becoming sleep deprived and it could have serious consequences on your health and well-being. Research shows that drowsiness is a major cause of traffic accidents and deaths,  in tests of driving ability and hand-eye coordination, people deprived of sleep perform as badly as, or even worse than, people who are intoxicated. Disrupted sleep patterns can cause you to get too little sleep, Insomnia, or problems staying awake, Hypersomnia.

What is insomnia?

It is the inability to sleep sufficiently to support the physical and emotional needs of your body. Insomnia can be described in three ways, transient, acute, or chronic.

  • Transient insomnia is a sleep disorder that can last from one day to several weeks. It could be the result of work shift changes, sleep environment alterations, differences in sleeping time, stressful situations, and depression.
  • Acute insomnia can cause trouble falling asleep for periods from three weeks to half a year (6 months).
  • Chronic insomnia is a sleep disorder that can continue for years. It can be caused by deeper physiologic or mental diseases and may include sleepiness, muscular and mental fatigue, and hallucinations etc.

What is Hypersomnia?

Hypersomnia is the drowsiness you may experience that may cause them to fall asleep in inappropriate situations or at inappropriate times, such as when driving, during work presentations, or film etc.

Excessive sleeping can be associated to …..

  • Chronic pain
  • Medication
  • Prior lack of sleep and disrupted sleep patterns
  • Shift patterns
  • Diagnosed sleep disorders such Sleep Apnoea and  narcolepsy
  • Hypocalcaemia, too much calcium in the blood
  •   Under-active thyroids

How do I know I have a sleep disorder?

You might……..

  • Feel irritable or sleepy during the day?
  • Feel yourself falling asleep when sitting still, watching television or reading?
  • Feel very tired and momentarily feel your eyes close while driving?
  • Have difficulty concentrating?
  • Get told by others that you look tired?
  • React slower than is normal for you?
  • Have trouble controlling your emotions?
  • Feel like you need to take a power nap almost every day?
  • Require caffeinated drinks or high energy sugary drinks to keep yourself going?

If you answered “yes” to any of the previous questions, you may have a sleep disorder

What to expect when you visit Affronte:

Step 1. Personal History

This will be a detailed questionnaire to discover any possible reasons that could contribute towards your disrupted sleep pattern, and to establish what sort of therapy would be preferable for you.  We may go through colour therapy with you which can be helpful to establish anxiety levels and generally to find out more about you. An important part is recognising your negative internal talk and how it affects you. For instance, if you focus on “how you are not going to get a good night sleep” all day it becomes a real sleep disrupter. We aim to optimize your way of thinking and explore avenues that can affect your sleep and deal with them one by one; this is why it’s important to take a detailed personal history.  Disrupted sleep patterns could be the result of a medical condition or the treatment you receive, it could also be due to what you consume unknowingly of its affect on you. It could be due to your weight which can cause sleep apnoea or numerous other things, so by being fully committed to taking a full and personal history we can work with you to bring about the change you want.

Step 2.Together we will complete a stress inventory

We will work together to discover what stresses you out, what’s on your mind that prevent sleep. We have specific techniques to assist with uncovering any underlying emotional issues that affect us. Sometimes we are not even aware of the issue as its deep routed in the depths of our mind and how they can affect us today.  Emotional clearing is the most essential part of this process, we could use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Emotional freedom Techniques and Meridian Tapping, Eye Motion Desensitisation and Reprocessing,  or a number of other techniques to help you gain control of your emotions.  The therapist will go through this at a time and speed you are happy with to help you address your worries and stress, quell mental jibber-jabber and create a calm mental platform to help you fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly.  This is a very therapeutic process for those who when the lights go out,  the  conscious minds light up with thoughts and worries or whatever else you are holding onto to which prevents a good night’s sleep.

Step 3. Discover how what you consume affects your sleep

It might surprise you to know that what you eat determines how well you sleep. The chemical we ingest have a direst affect on our hormones which can be a sleep disrupter. In order for you to sleep well we will look at the types of food you eat, and the timing. Carbohydrates give us an energy boost when taken at the right time in the right amount it can aid sleep. Most people would take precautions not to drink caffeine before bedtime as it could keep us awake, but sometimes caffeine hides in products, even in medication.  Once we establish this you can take action to avoid ingesting anything that can be a sleep disrupter before you intend sleeping. There could be other foods that hinder you’re sleeping so here you will get a chance to learn more about the food you eat and test out different eating patterns to see which best suits you.  We will look at the effects of highly spiced foods, foods high in fat or protein and how they affect your digestive system and overall health. Research shows that high fat foods not only increases your weight but can be directly responsible for disruptions in your sleeping pattern because they are difficult to digest,  you may feel bloated and require regular trips to the toilet. Whilst protein is good for feeding your muscles and keeping you strong, it is not easily digested if eaten too close to bed time, so there are some tricks we can show you were eating is concerned to promote sleep. Some milk and dairy products contains a high concentration of the essential amino acid tryptophan which can aid sleep, so now you know it’s not just a myth that having milk before bed helps you to sleep.

How can drinking alcohol affect my sleep?

Alcohol is something we might find pleasurable, and in moderation does have health benefits and can help you to drop off to a comfortable night’s sleep. The chemicals in alcohol temporarily depresses the central nervous system, albeit short lived as sleep often tends to be short lived because there can be a rebound effect a few hours later. Alcohol can also lead to disrupted sleep as you become dehydrated, you can experience headaches, sweating and nightmares, and trips to the toilet. Time you’re drinking to and know your limits to improve sleep, this includes any liquids, drinking too soon before bed means you might need to relieve yourself during the night.

How can smoking affect my sleep?

If you are a smoker, you may think that having a smoke before bedtime will relax you. Cigarettes contains  up to 4,000 chemicals, including caffeine nicotine both of which are stimulants,  plus it won’t be long before your addiction start to kick in and starts craving more,  so timing is everything or maybe it’s a good time to think about becoming a non-smoker.

Step 4. The therapies we might use to reset you sleep cycle

Fortunately, sleep is a part of rest that’s all about conditioning ourselves with the little behaviours that make falling asleep easier. It is a complex process of restoration and renewal for the body and is believed to be important in many physiologic processes including the processing of experiences and the consolidation of memories, so sleeping is essential for memory and learning too.  If you were to observe a baby sleeping, they sleep if all their physical and emotional needs are met. Babies have an inbuilt mechanism to sleep, they have not yet learnt to worry or stress so they sleep naturally, and adjustment to sleep is intuitively done by this mechanism.  We all have this sleep mechanism; it might not yet be working as well as it could due to internal or external factors, but he behaviours that causes disrupted sleep patterns are  learnt, so if you learnt it you can unlearn it.

Your therapist will go through a several strategies that will enable us to reset your sleep pattern, simple but affective tips to help you naturally feel tired.  You will be amazed at how just small changes can have a vast impact to your sleep. Something simple in your sleeping environment, or something you do that can promote sleep such as reading or taking exercise. We will look for associations between sleep and put boundaries in place to ensure your sleeping environment is working for you.

To help you “switch off” and promote relaxation of the mind, and relax the internal talk and thoughts we use Hypnosis to put you into a relaxed state so we can communicate with your unconscious mind. This is a deeply relaxing and therapeutic experience which you can do yourself with the CD provided. We will teach you self hypnosis and other techniques to reduce stress and worry.

Step 5. Feedback and after-care

Your appointment will come to an end, you will be asked for any feedback and of any areas you feel you want to work on in the future or what you feel we could improve on. Here at Affronte we value your feedback as it helps us to grow and improve the service we provide. You will be given after care information, and your self-hypnosis products.

You may need one of more appointments, our aim is to bring back your spark for like, and so you will be feeling happier and more content in life. A good night’s sleep is paramount to nourish your immune system, your heart, your lungs and your skin and can even help you maintain a healthier weight.  Life in general feels so much better when you sleep better so why not take action now?



After suffering with depression for years, during which I was given counselling and antidepressants, personally it was clear that none of these worked for me. A friend recommended

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