A medical condition where the patient stops breathing for 10-60 seconds during sleep. This cessation or stoppage of breathing is called apnea. These episodes can occur several times throughout the night.
An estimated 18 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, yet up to 95% of cases go undiagnosed and untreated.
The National Commission on Sleep Disorders attributes 38,000 cardiovascular deaths a year to sleep apnea.
Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea:
- Loud, irregular snoring
- Excessive tiredness
- Lack of energy
- Daytime sleepiness
- Falling asleep while driving
- Morning headaches
- Weight gain
- Frequent nocturnal urination
- Short attention span
- Anxiety or depression
Insomnia is the inability to get enough sleep, or a restful sleep. The average person needs 7-9 hours of quality sleep to function normally. Insomnia can be caused by a number of medical or behavioral factors such as stress, tension, shift-work, etc.
Signs and Symptoms of Insomnia:
- Difficulty falling asleep
- No problem falling asleep but difficulty staying asleep (many awakenings)
- Waking up too early
Narcolepsy patients experience an irresistible need to sleep, regardless of the amount of sleep they get. People with narcolepsy can fall asleep at any time, such as while at work, talking, or driving a car. These “sleep attacks” can last from 30 seconds to more than 30 minutes.Narcolepsy is a less common sleep disorder which affects less than 1% of the population. Its onset can occur at any time throughout life, but its peek onset is during the teen years.
Signs and Symptoms of Narcolepsy:
- Excessive sleepiness
- Temporary decrease or loss of muscle control
- Vivid dream-like images when drifting off to sleep or waking up
- Waking up unable to move or talk for a brief time
RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME
Restless Legs Syndrome is a discomfort in the legs which is relieved by moving or stimulating the legs. This feeling is difficult to describe and commonly referred to as a crawling, tingling or prickling sensation. Most people find the symptoms to be less noticeable during the day and more pronounced in the evening or at night, especially during the onset of sleep. For many people, the symptoms disappear by early morning, allowing for more refreshing sleep at that time. Once diagnosed, treatment by medication has been found useful for many patients.