A sleep disorder happens to be a condition that will stop someone from getting a restful night of sleep and in return will end up with daytime dysfunction and drowsiness. There are over 80 different types of sleep disorders and around 70 million people in America suffer from them. The most important sleep disorders are Narcolepsy, RLS or Restless Leg Syndrome, Sleep Apnea, and Insomnia.
Narcolepsy is a neurological disorder that affects the control of sleep and when you are awake. People who have narcolepsy will often have severe daytime sleepiness as well as uncontrolled episodes of falling asleep. These sudden episodes can occur at any time of the day and during any type of activity. There are some patients that have narcolepsy that will have muscle weakness and laughter as well as other emotions. Narcolepsy often begins between the ages of 15 and 25, but can happen at any age and in most cases, narcolepsy is untreated and undiagnosed.
Restless Leg Syndrome
RLS or Restless Leg Syndrome is a sleep disorder that will cause a severe and irresistible urge to move your legs. This sensation is brought about by resting like sitting for long periods of time such as being at theater or while driving or laying down on a bed. Restless leg syndrome normally happens in the evening which makes it hard to go to sleep and stay asleep. It can be associated with other issues like daytime sleepiness, issues concentrating, and irritability. Often times people who have restless leg syndrome will want to walk around and shake their legs in order to relieve the sensation.
Sleep Apnea is actually a pretty serious sleep disorder that happens when someone’s breathing is interrupted while they are sleeping. People who have untreated sleep apnea will stop breathing repeatedly during sleep. There are two different types of sleep apnea. You have obstructive sleep apnea which is more common and it is caused by blockage of the airway normally when the soft tissue in the back of the throat collapses while you are sleeping. Central Sleep Apnea or CSA is when the airway isn’t blocked but the brain forgets to tell the lungs that they need to breathe. This is called Central sleep apnea due to the fact that it is related to the central nervous system. The symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea are snoring, fatigue, daytime sleepiness, gasping for air while sleeping, restlessness during sleep, as well as trouble concentrating. Those who happen to have Central sleep apnea may have gasping for air but it has been mostly reported as waking up repeatedly through the night.
Insomnia is where people have trouble staying asleep or falling asleep. Those who have insomnia will most likely have these symptoms: having at least one daytime issue like sleepiness, fatigue, mood issues, concentration issues, accidents while driving or at work due to not sleeping well, unrefreshing sleep, waking up too early in the morning, waking up often throughout the night and having issues going back to sleep and difficulty falling asleep.
Insomnia varies about when it lasts and how often it happens. 50% of adults will have bouts of insomnia and 1 in 10 will have chronic insomnia. Insomnia can happen by itself or be associated with a psychiatric or medical condition as well as it can be short term or long term and it can come and go with times when a person doesn’t have sleep issues.