Sleep

Sleep

More than half of Americans experience sleep problems, from sleep apnea to snoring to narcolepsy. Drugs and devices are stepping in to relieve symptoms.

The insomnia definition experts use is consistent difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or a combination of both. People with insomnia toss and turn in bed, and never feel as though they’ve gotten a satisfying night’s sleep.

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder in which people repeatedly stop breathing throughout the night. Each time their brain restarts breathing, they briefly wake up. Because pauses in breathing can occur many times an hour, people with sleep apnea have constantly disrupted sleep.

People who are overweight are at greatest risk for sleep apnea, because excess tissue tends to fall over their airways and block breathing. Sleep apnea is often undiagnosed, but it’s important to get it identified and treated, because having this condition over time can increase the risk for conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. One telltale sign you have sleep apnea is snoring. Other sleep apnea symptoms include sleepiness, difficulty concentrating, irritability, depression, and headaches.

Sleep apnea treatments include a CPAP machine, which gently blows air into your throat through a mask during the night. This constant flow of air keeps your airway open and prevents you from snoring while you sleep. A mouthpiece called an oral appliance can also keep the airways open. Losing weight and quitting smoking are lifestyle measures that can help relieve apnea symptoms. Sometimes surgery is done to remove excess tissue and widen breathing passages.

People with narcolepsy fall asleep at unexpected times during the day. Problems with their sleep-wake cycle make them sleep poorly at night, and feel unusually tired during the day as a result. Antidepressants and other medicines can help control narcolepsy symptoms.

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Get a FREE Special Report from the editors of University Health News, Sleeping Disorders: Narcolepsy, sleep apnea test, snoring solutions, insomnia cures, and more.

You’ll read about habits and conditions that rob us of peaceful slumber.

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Is My Daytime Sleepiness Really Narcolepsy?

Is My Daytime Sleepiness Really Narcolepsy?

· · Sleep

The term “narcolepsy” may conjure up almost comical images of someone falling asleep in the middle of a conversation. But this sleeping disorder is no laughing matter to those who struggle with it. Narcolepsy symptoms include more than excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS). They include bouts of muscle weakness (cataplexy) and  … Read More

Why Am I Having Hypnagogic Hallucinations?

Why Am I Having Hypnagogic Hallucinations?

· · Sleep

Do you ever have wild visions or dreams that are extremely vivid and seem like real life just as you’re falling asleep? You may be experiencing hypnagogic hallucinations, a condition often associated with narcolepsy. In fact, hypnagogic hallucinations are among the four most common narcolepsy symptoms, along with sleep paralysis,  … Read More

Wake Up! Narcolepsy Treatment Strategies

Wake Up! Narcolepsy Treatment Strategies

· · Sleep

There is no cure for narcolepsy, that unusual medical condition in which someone suddenly falls into a deep sleep in the midst of such normal behaviors as talking or working. Medications, however, can help increase daytime alertness.
Modafinil (Provigil), for example, is approved specifically for the excessive daytime sleepiness that  … Read More

What Causes Sleepwalking?

What Causes Sleepwalking?

· · Sleep

If you’re a fan of TV sitcoms, you’ve probably seen an episode (or two) where a main character gets out of bed in the middle of the night, walks in a stupor to the kitchen, and makes a midnight snack without even opening his (or her) eyes. While such a  … Read More

How to Stop Snoring: Cures for You to Try

How to Stop Snoring: Cures for You to Try

· · Sleep

When it comes to figuring out how to stop snoring, some desperate people may be willing to try anything—or suggest anything to their bedmates. There are no guarantees, of course, but you may find a snoring cure that works for you or your partner.
In some cases, losing weight can help  … Read More

Think Natural: Cures for Insomnia

Think Natural: Cures for Insomnia

· · Sleep

Are you among those who count sheep until the wee hours of the morning, trying unsuccessfully to drift off to sleep? You’re not alone. Insomnia affects about 30 percent of the general population and almost half of adults over age 60. Fortunately, there are a number of natural cures for  … Read More

Sleep Apnea Symptoms: How a Sleep Study Test Can Help

Sleep Apnea Symptoms: How a Sleep Study Test Can Help

· · Sleep

If you recall waking up as a child and hearing one of your parents snoring on the other side of the house, you’d be justified wondering whether you were hearing sleep apnea symptoms. In fact, your snoring parent may never have pursued a formal diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).  … Read More

What Is Insomnia?

What Is Insomnia?

· · Sleep

What does insomnia mean? You might picture someone tossing and turning in bed, trying to get comfortable and relaxed enough to fall asleep. Or maybe you see a vision of yourself just lying awake in bed, feeling tired, but not enough to drift off to sleep.
But what is insomnia beyond  … Read More

Is Twitching While Sleeping a Problem?

Is Twitching While Sleeping a Problem?

· · Sleep

Twitching while sleeping is a common occurrence, but many people who experience these brief muscle movements aren’t even aware that they’re happening. Sometimes, however, the sudden twitching or jerking of your hand or foot is enough to awaken you. Or your spouse.
Twitching while sleeping also may be a symptom of  … Read More

FreeGuide_cover_Sleep_wShield_300

Sleep Better Tonight!

Get a FREE Special Report from the editors of University Health News, Sleeping Disorders: Narcolepsy, sleep apnea test, snoring solutions, insomnia cures, and more.

You’ll read about habits and conditions that rob us of peaceful slumber.



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