Sleep has become one of the biggest health problems people face today.
50 to 70 million Americans are estimated to have some form of sleep disorder. You’re in good company if you share this problem.
Sleep is complex, and it isn’t always easy to understand what’s going on. Before you start trying to fix your problem, you need to know what the common issues are.
Below are seven common sleep disorders that you need to be aware of.
If you’re having problems falling or staying asleep, you may have insomnia. If it only happens occasionally, it may not be a big deal. But if this is something that happens regularly, it can begin to impact how you function through the day.
There are several causes of insomnia, so treatment for it isn’t straightforward. You will need to contact your doctor to run tests.
It could be as simple as being staying exposed to screens too late into the evening, or a problem with your body could cause it.
If there is nothing wrong with your body, then you will need to try to modify lifestyle factors that are known to cause problems with sleep.
2. Sleep Apnea
Are you a snorer? In many cases, it isn’t a big deal. But in others, it’s a sign of sleep apnea.
When you have sleep apnea, you regularly stop breathing for short periods throughout the night. This will cause the oxygen levels in your blood to drop.
This problem can happen because of an obstruction in your airways. Luckily, there are treatments available.
One of those is CPAP machines. They will help you breathe properly through the night. Modern CPAP machines have become more advanced and can now offer connected services that monitor your sleep during the night.
3. Restless Leg Syndrome
Do you often have the irresistible urge to move your leg? If so, it may be a sign of restless leg syndrome.
It’s a neurological disorder that creates discomfort when your leg is resting for an extended period. One of the prime times for this to happen is when you’re sleeping.
When this happens to you, it can be difficult for you to fall and stay asleep. When it happens, you can walk, stretch, or rub the problem area to help to relieve the symptoms.
Medicine, diet, and exercise can be used to treat restless leg syndrome. You will need to work with your doctor to see which method is right for you.
Another neurological sleep disorder is narcolepsy. This condition can cause someone to get very sleepy during the day.
The problem isn’t just that you get sleepy during the day, but that you can experience sudden sleep episodes. Narcolepsy is a hazard for anyone who suffers from the condition. What happens if you fall asleep while driving?
One of the primary methods of treating narcolepsy is stimulants. They stimulate your nervous system to help keep you awake during the day.
If those don’t work, doctors can also prescribe anti-depressants, SSRIs, SNRIs, or sodium oxybate.
Other lifestyle changes can help. The most significant change is to try and keep a strict sleep schedule. Doing this helps train your body to only sleep during certain times of the day.
Some of us talk in our sleep. That isn’t a big deal since we’re in the safe confines of our beds.
Unfortunately, not everyone stays there. A sleepwalker can get and up during the night and perform tasks while they are sleeping.
While much of the time you’ll be fine, things can get dangerous if you leave the house. If you suffer from this disorder, then make sure you keep the doors secure.
If you occasionally sleepwalk, treatment usually isn’t discussed. It’s enough to make your home environment safe for when it happens.
When it happens regularly, you can start talking about treatment. In these cases, medications can be used to help the problem.
6. Periodic Limb Movement Disorder
Aside from occasional rolling over, you’re supposed to stay still while you’re sleeping. When your body occasionally jerks, you may suffer from a period limb movement disorder.
This disorder is sometimes compared to restless leg syndrome, but it is different. With restless leg syndrome, you feel the need to move your leg after letting it rest. The movement with periodic limb movement disorder is completely involuntary.
When this happens, it can partially wake you up during the night. The interruption to your sleep can cause you to be drowsy during the day.
Once you get your diagnosis, many doctors will treat you by prescribing medication. Your meds should stop the movement so you can get a better nights sleep.
7. Circadian Rhythm Disorder
Have you ever had jet lag? If so, then you know how much of a struggle it can be to get back on a regular sleep schedule.
Jet lag happens because your time zone changed and your body hasn’t had time to adjust. Circadian rhythm disorder is something similar to this.
This disorder happens when your body has a hard time understanding your natural sleep cycle. You see this a lot with shift workers who can’t keep a regular sleep schedule.
To help with this, you will need to try to set a regular sleep schedule. Your body will need to learn this schedule, so try not to deviate from it.
It also helps to turn off electronics at night. The blue light from them confuses your body and makes it think that it’s still light outside.
Make Sure You Understand These Common Sleep Disorders
If you’re having problems sleeping at night, you need to understand why. Make sure you understand these common sleep disorders, so you and your doctor can come up with a plan to fix things.
If you try remedies out without understanding the root problem, then you may not find the solution that you need.
Once you get your sleep under control, you need to look at the rest of your health. Head back to our blog to learn about our latest health tips.