Keeping one’s body healthy and fit can be a challenging task to accomplish, especially for people with lesser knowledge about how to do it properly. While some people may tend to focus on their nutritional intake and physical health, getting a sufficient amount of sleep doesn’t fall short of maintaining your body at its healthiest state.
Despite its importance, many people become more at risk of numerous health issues as a consequence of lack of sleep and sleep disorders. Although the causes of sleep disorders may vary among people, it’s crucial to know how to spot their symptoms to prevent any worse-case scenarios. Continue reading this article to learn more.
Sleep Disorders: Things To Know
If you’re suffering from sleep disorders, you might be thinking about the proper measures to take to deal with your condition. It’s noteworthy to mention that treatments for sleep disorders may vary depending on their type. You can consider going to a treatment center such as SleepWise Clinic, to undergo a sleep study, or find out the causes of your disorder.
While some people may not know it, sleep quality poses significant impacts on overall health and wellness. People suffering from sleep deprivation and sleep disorders are believed to be more at risk for many health conditions.
Here are some important things you need to know about sleep disorders:
- Sleep disorders are conditions that could significantly affect one’s ability to obtain good sleep quality at night. It could also refer to medical conditions that impede one from getting restorative sleep at night.
- People suffering from sleep disorders may experience extreme exhaustion, irritability, and sleepiness during the day. While there are various types of sleep disorders, the most common ones include daytime sleepiness, insomnia, narcolepsy, sleep apnea, and restless leg syndrome (RLS).
- In most cases, sleep disorders or circadian rhythm issues are often triggered by stress, work shift, or jet lag. Many experts believe that unhealthy eating habits, improper lifestyles, and substance abuse are some of the most prominent factors that increase the risks of sleep disorders.
- It’s also important to know that sleep disorders may be indicators of other health problems. Although it could be difficult to manage sleep disorders, such problems may be resolved once you get proper treatment and medication.
Types Of Sleep Disorders
As mentioned earlier, sleep disorders are medical conditions that primarily affect one’s ability to sleep or prevent them from obtaining restorative sleep at night. While some people tend to disregard things related to their sleeping patterns, doing that may bring harm to one’s body.
To better know how you can manage your sleeping disorders, you must first know the type of disorder you’re suffering from and their symptoms. Here’s a list of some sleep disorders that you need to know:
Among the most common type of sleep disorders, insomnia is considered to be the primary reason behind many people’s difficulty in sleeping. Insomnia refers to one’s inability to sleep or stay asleep. A study shows that approximately one-third of the adult population experiences symptoms of insomnia. 10-15 % of these people have difficulties with their body functions during the day, while 10% suffer from mild to severe signs of insomnia.
The underlying causes of insomnia may vary, but the most common factors may include stress, anxiety, digestive problems, hormones, and jet lag. People suffering from insomnia disorder may experience the following:
- Short attention span
- Extreme fatigue
- Unusual weight changes
- Mood swings
- Behavior instability
- Poor work or school performance
Another sleep disorder that people may encounter is sleep apnea. This medical condition is characterized by the sudden pauses in one’s breathing during their sleep. While some people may not initially notice its symptoms, sleep apnea could hinder one’s normal breathing capacity and make it harder to take air in when sleeping which can cause difficulty in sleeping comfortably.
There are two types of sleep apnea: obstructive apnea and central sleep apnea. The former condition is known for the sudden pauses in one’s normal airflow because the air passages become too narrow. On the other hand, central sleep apnea refers to the problem between the connection in one’s brain and muscles that are responsible for the breathing process.
Have you ever experienced losing consciousness all of a sudden during the day? Or are you having difficulty obtaining deep, restful sleep at night due to unknown reasons? If you’re experiencing these symptoms, then you might be suffering from narcolepsy.
This sleep disorder refers to the sudden ‘sleep attacks’ that usually occur during the day. No matter what you’re doing or where you are, there’s always a risk of falling asleep without warning. People suffering from narcolepsy may feel extreme exhaustion and fall asleep suddenly.
Narcolepsy may also be associated with other neurological disorders and sleep issues, including sleep paralysis and multiple sclerosis.
While this term may not be popular among many people, you might’ve experienced one of the early symptoms of parasomnia. This condition is characterized by abnormal movements, talks, emotions, actions, and behavior one usually does while asleep. It’s considered a disruptive sleep-related disorder.
Some of the primary symptoms of parasomnias may include sleepwalking, sleep talking, sleep terrors, nightmare disorders, sleep-related eating disorders, and sleep paralysis. A person suffering from parasomnia may also experience groaning, bedwetting, teeth grinding, or jaw clenching.
Diagnosing Sleep Disorders
When dealing with sleep disorders, one of the best things you need to do is to consult a specialist. You might consider seeking help from sleep specialists who can assess your condition and determine its severity. Your physician may perform various tests and evaluations to know about your symptoms, which may include the following:
- Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT): This type of assessment is mainly used to help diagnose sleep disorders like narcolepsy. Typically used in conjunction with polysomnography (PSG), this daytime napping study gauges the severity of one’s condition and helps identify the appropriate treatment for their sleep disorder.
- Polysomnography (PSG): This lab study is primarily designed to evaluate oxygen levels, brain waves, and body movements of a person while sleeping. PSG is commonly utilized to determine cases of sleep apnea.
- Electroencephalogram (EEG): While the first two tests are often used to diagnose sleep disorders, electroencephalogram (EEG) on the other hand, is a part of a PSG. This laboratory test primarily evaluates the electrical activities in one’s brain and helps identify potential issues that might be linked with one’s sleep disorder.
Treating Sleep Disorders
People suffering from sleep disorders might have a hard time detecting their condition. Likewise, it could be equally challenging to help yourself get through it. When dealing with sleep disorders, it’s important to know that they’re treatable. You also have better chances of recovering, especially if you know who to seek help from and the appropriate ways to do it.
It’s crucial to know how you can deal with sleep disturbances. To help you out, continue reading below:
- Monitor Your Sleep Condition
When it comes to dealing with sleep disorders, you need to consider undergoing treatments. It’d be better to get started with the simplest and easiest options. Take the initiative to assess your condition through at-home sleep tests.
You must not forget to monitor your sleeping patterns and track your sleep quality, as they could help you obtain background knowledge about your sleep disorder. While these alternatives could offer numerous advantages, it’s still best to consult a healthcare provider first for better medical advice.
- Consult A Specialist
To effectively get through your condition, it’s important to seek help from professionals like sleep specialists and consider getting a sleep medicine consultation. For people who aren’t familiar with this term, a sleep medicine consultation is an appointment conducted between a sleep medicine specialist and a patient.
This process focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of various sleep disorders. Sleep medicine specialists will perform several tests, including overnight sleep studies. For those who’s been suffering from early signs of sleep disorders, this could be beneficial.
One of the many good reasons why people must consider this option is because it could help them determine their condition, its potential causes, and the appropriate treatment for it.
- Undergo Treatments
There’s no denying that dealing with sleep disorders can be challenging. There are plenty of available options you can consider to obtain your purposes. Aside from that, it’s worth mentioning that numerous types of sleep issues can now be treated with medical alternatives, such as treatments and cognitive medications.
One can also improve their sleeping patterns through behavioral therapies and treatments. One of the most popular treatments for sleep disorders is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Widely known for its incredible benefits in alleviating numerous types of sleep disorders, CBT is among the most commonly used therapies for sleep issues.
CBTS could be conducted individually, by group, or even online. CBT therapies can modify according to one’s condition. For instance, cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) focuses on relieving early signs of insomnia disorder among sleepers. In most cases, CBT treatment courses may last up to five to eight weeks.
- Take Medications
Sleep is essential in promoting the natural production of human growth hormones. But, a constant lack of sleep may cause disruptions in this process. To better prevent that from happening, you can consider taking medications. Some of the most common medications for sleep issues may include anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications.
In a way, these drugs could help you fall asleep faster and obtain deep, restful sleep at night. However, it’s still best to consult your doctor before taking any medication to avoid endangering your health.
- Consider Other Alternatives
When nothing of the abovementioned options seems to work, you can consider non-medical methods. These may include hypnosis, sleep restriction, relaxation strategies, and stimulus control. You may also consider making lifestyle changes to better recover from your condition.
Dealing with sleep disorders may not be easy. Fortunately, there are ways you can do to better manage their symptoms. You should know your condition and the available treatment options you can consider. For a better idea, you can consider the abovementioned considerations and tips. Also, it’s best to consult your doctor to effectively recover from your sleep disorder.