SLEEP DISORDER.

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Living with different people we see new things daily that surprise us. Remember in boarding school when you’d be told of a girl/boy walking at night in the corridors and we would all be scared to death? Now here I am to let you know that it was nothing to cause alarm, the boy/girl you saw walking could have been suffering from a sleep disorder and was literary innocent. Sleep disorders are conditions that impair your sleep or prevent you from getting restful sleep and as a result, can cause daytime sleepiness and other symptoms. Everyone can experience sleeping disorders and therefore no one should be subjected to discrimination. However, you might have a sleeping disorder if you regularly experience difficulty sleeping, you are often tired during the day even though you slept for at least seven hours the night before, and you have a reduced or impaired ability to perform regular daytime activities.

Experts recommend that adults sleep at least seven to nine hours per night, although some people require more and others require less. People who sleep less are more likely to use the internet at night or bring work home from the office. Sleep is most disturbed by the need to use the bathroom and physical pain or discomfort in older adults. Each week caffeine consumption causes a loss of three to five hours of sleep while having a television in the bedroom contributes to a loss of two hours of sleep each week in children.

Not getting the proper amount or quality of sleep leads to more than just feeling tired. Sleepiness interferes with cognitive function, which can lead to learning disabilities in children, memory impairment in people of all ages, personality changes, and depression. People who are deprived of sleep experience difficulty making decisions, irritability, poor performance, and slower reaction time, placing them at risk for automobile and work-related accidents. Sleep loss can also adversely affect life by contributing to the development of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

There are approximately 80 different types of sleep disorders but the top ones are; insomnia, sleep apnea/snoring, restless legs syndrome, and narcolepsy.

Insomnia

This is a sleep disorder where people have difficulty falling or staying asleep. Insomnia varies in how long it lasts and how often it occurs. Insomnia varies in how long it last and how often it occurs. About 50% of adults experience occasional bouts of insomnia and one in 10 suffer from chronic insomnia. It can come and go, with periods when a person has no sleep problems. Acute insomnia can last from one night to a few weeks while chronic can last at least three nights a week for a month or longer. Causes of insomnia can be life stresses, illness, depression, pain, light, and noise.

Sleep apnea and snoring

This is a potentially serious sleep disorder that occurs when a person breathing is interrupted during sleep. There are two types of sleep apnea obstructive sleep apnea is more common, and it is caused by blockage of the airway, usually when the soft tissue in the back of the throat collapses during sleep. Symptoms include snoring, fatigue, restlessness during sleep, and trouble concentrating. The other type is central sleep apnea the airway is not blocked but the brain fails to notify the body to breathe.

Restless legs syndrome

It is a sleeping disorder that causes an intense, often irresistible urge to move the legs. This sensation is often brought about by too much resting, and prolonged periods of sitting such as long drives. Often people with this syndrome would want to walk around and relieve the uncomfortable sensation.

Narcolepsy

Is a sleep disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness? This can be profound and may lead to falling asleep in an inappropriate situation, such as while working or driving a car. It is characterized by sleep paralysis, sudden loss of muscle tone, and hallucination. This dangerous and downright scary condition is believed to be caused by a lack of a brain chemical called hypocretin, which promotes wakefulness and maintains muscle tone.

The first step to overcoming a sleep disorder is to see your healthcare provider and get a diagnosis. Keeping a journal provides a thorough description of sleep problems and any suspected causes, once you are diagnosed treatment varies conditions, but many of them include improved hygiene.

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