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Talking about Insomnia

Susan Watson is a sleep specialist. University student, Robert Kales, visits Susan for an interview...


Robert: Thank you very much for your agreeing to have an interview with me today, Mrs Watson.

Many people experience insomnia, and the rate of insomnia is steadily rising. How do you define insomnia?

Susan: Well, insomnia is a sleep disorder where you have difficulty falling or staying asleep.

Robert: By this definition, we can say that many people suffer from this condition. What are the main causes?

Susan: For years it has been called a symptom of psychological problems, such as depression. Insomniacs usually begin losing sleep over some problems, such as debt or a serious illness in the family, but it becomes a problem when they continue to have trouble in sleeping for months, and even years.

Robert: Are there any personality traits specific to people with insomnia?

Susan: Well, yes. In general, insomniacs present a consistent personality profile. They are usually self-critical, nervous, and tense.

Robert:  Do sleeping pills cure insomnia?

Susan: I do not recommend sleeping pills. They actually cause insomnia because after two days of using them, they alter brain’s chemistry.

Robert: What do you suggest that people with insomnia should do?

Susan: I highly recommend an old-fashioned remedy which is drinking warm milk before bedtime. And listening to repeated, soothing music really helps too.

images related to the title of the conversations
Talking about Insomnia


Phrasal verb
Example sentence
To come around

To become conscious again after an illness or an operation

One hour after the operation, she started to come around.

To shake something off

To get rid of an illness

I really hope I can shake this cold off before the weekend.

To pass out

To become unconscious for a short period of time.

When the ball hit her on the head, she passed out.

To pick something up

To start to suffer from something

She picked up the cold when she was- on holiday.

To come down with something

To start to suffer symptoms of an illness.

I think I’m starting to come down with the flu.

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