We frequently take it for granted and anticipate falling asleep peacefully every night. But getting enough sleep presents a problem for millions of individuals worldwide. They struggle to fall asleep or much worse because of sleep disorders.
What, however, are sleep disorders? What triggers them, too?
The what, why, and impacts of sleep problems will all be discussed in this essay, along with how getting too little sleep affects the body.
Ready? Let’s start now.
What Is A Sleep Disorder?
Simply put, a sleep disorder is a disruption in your sleep patterns. New, harmful sleep patterns are brought into your life, changing the fundamental structure of your sleep, preventing you from sleeping soundly and enjoying a decent night’s rest.
There are many people who have sleep issues; between 10 to 20 percent of people say they have serious sleep issues, and 33% of adults say they experience symptoms of insomnia.
A range of factors can be used to categorise sleep disorders, such as difficulties getting asleep, excessive daytime sleepiness, difficulty breathing at night, issues with your natural sleep-wake cycles, and nighttime behaviours that interfere with your ability to fall asleep.
How would you identify a sleep disorder? There are a few typical signals that indicate there is a serious problem with your sleep:
- excessive daytime sleepiness irregular nighttime breathing irregular nighttime movement
- Having trouble falling asleep
- There is a considerable possibility that you have a sleep disturbance if you have even one of these signs or symptoms.
What Are Some Common Sleep Disorders?
There are numerous widespread sleep disorders that have an impact on millions of people worldwide.
These conditions include:
The inability to fall asleep or stay asleep, which leaves a person with insomnia with insufficient sleep, makes it the most well-known of all sleep disorders.
Most insomniacs require more than 20 to 30 minutes to fall asleep (or fall back asleep). This is referred to as “chronic insomnia” if it occurs at least three times a week for longer than three months.
The majority of individuals (around 10%) have insomnia, which is the most widespread sleep condition.
Medication or cognitive behavioural therapy are frequently used to treat insomnia.
Snoring to an extreme is known as sleep apnea. It is a persistent medical disorder when a person repeatedly stops breathing while sleeping. When breathing stops for 10 seconds or longer, oxygen levels fall and the person may momentarily awaken from sleep.
Sleep apnea typically results from one of two things. First, an obstruction of the upper airway may be the cause. “Obstructive sleep apnea” is what this is. Another possible cause is “central sleep apnea,” which is when the brain itself fails to start breathing.
The following health consequences of sleep apnea can be serious if untreated:
- heart attack
- Quick death
All of these come on top of the acute tiredness that sleep apnea frequently brings on.
A CPAP machine is often used to treat sleep apnea since it continuously pushes air into the patient’s nose to keep them breathing.
This video is useful if you want to learn more about sleep apnea:
Restless Leg Syndrome
RLS is a condition where a person feels the desire to move about continually when in bed, especially their legs. The sensation is frequently described as aching, burning, tingling, or even as bugs are crawling on the person’s legs. It can be really difficult to get to sleep and stay asleep when you have these symptoms.
Many factors, such as pregnancy, iron deficiency, and obesity, might contribute to restless legs.
Exercise, a reduction in caffeine or alcohol intake, and in severe situations, medication can all be used to treat RLS.
Circadian Rhythm Disorders
Your body’s internal clock, your circadian rhythm, controls when you get up and when you go to bed. When a person’s internal clock is out of sync with the outside world, they experience circadian rhythm disorders.
For instance, being wide awake at 2:00 AM could mean that your circadian rhythm is no longer in sync with the cycle of light and dark.
These conditions are typically brought on by erratic work schedules, jet lag, advanced or delayed sleep phase syndrome, or blindness. Insomnia or excessive sleepiness may be the result of a circadian rhythm and environmental cue misalignment.
Disorders in the circadian rhythm can be treated with medication or organic substances like melatonin.
Sleep disorders known as parasomnias are characterised by peculiar, aberrant sleep activities. These actions, which can be sophisticated, are taken when the person is soundly sleeping and are made subconsciously. These activities can include everything from sleep terrors to sleepwalking to sleep eating to even sleep sex.
Many underlying factors, including sleep apnea, may be present. Luckily, drugs like clonazepam or melatonin can frequently be used to treat these conditions.
The temporary incapacity to move occurs when a person transitions from sleep to wakefulness or the other way around. This brief paralysis can be highly terrifying and frequently includes hallucinations as well. The disorder is widespread, with 25% of people having at least one episode.
If necessary, medicines can be used to cure sleep paralysis.
Narcolepsy is often characterised by four symptoms:
- Excessive slumber during the day
- Cataplexy (the abrupt loss of muscular tone in reaction to a particular stimuli such as laughter or surprise) (the sudden loss of muscle tone in response to a particular stimulus such as laughter or surprise)
- Hypnotic paralysis
- Hallucinations during hypnosis (very vivid hallucinations)
These signs can cause a person to appear to fall asleep in an instant at any moment.
Narcolepsy is most typically treated with drugs.
An informative film on narcolepsy is provided below:
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is characterised by persistent, irrational fatigue that does not improve with rest or sleep. Physical or mental exertion may make it worse, and the effects might be severe, leaving a person essentially helpless.
A person may experience so severe weariness that they must change their regular routine in order to conserve as much energy as possible.
Prior to receiving a CFS diagnosis, additional underlying conditions including sleep apnea must be checked out.
What Are The Effects Of Lack Of Sleep?
The negative repercussions of not getting enough sleep are numerous.
- Memory issues might result from not getting enough sleep. Lack of sleep can have an impact on both your short- and long-term memory because sleep is necessary for the formation of memories.
- Lack of sleep can make it harder to focus and solve problems.
- Changes in mood are a frequent side effect of sleep deprivation. Lack of sleep puts your emotions on edge and increases your risk of developing depression or anxiety.
- Your risk of developing high blood pressure significantly rises if you get less than five hours of sleep each night.
- Your immune system suffers when you don’t get enough sleep, which makes you far more susceptible to viruses that cause the flu and the common cold.
- Lack of sleep frequently has negative side effects, including weight gain. When you don’t get enough sleep, your brain fails to communicate to your body that you are full, which leads to overeating.
- Lack of sleep frequently results in individuals having a weak sex drive. This may occur in men due to a decline in total testosterone levels.
- Lack of sleep might impact your body’s capacity to regulate insulin, a hormone that lowers blood sugar. Lack of sleep frequently results in higher blood sugar levels, which can eventually lead to Type-2 diabetes.
- Lack of sleep affects your balance and coordination, which makes you far more likely to fall.
Don’t Neglect Your Sleep
Your body needs to sleep in order to function effectively. Lack of sleep can lead to a variety of issues that have a substantial negative impact on your life. You should take all necessary steps to acquire the rest you require.
Speak with a health care provider right away if you think you may have a sleep condition. Sleep issues can ruin your life if they go untreated.
Don’t let a sleep condition prevent you from leading a fulfilling life. Get help right away.
Sleep problems are serious issues. These may result in conditions like depression, heart disease, and weight gain. Be at ease, though! We are aware that this sounds frightening, but we also offer some excellent advice on how to treat a sleep disturbance or simply improve your sleep in general. Click the button below to get your free estimate right away. We guarantee you won’t regret it!