Sleep Disorders

sleep disorders

In today’s day and age, there is way too much to be cautious about. There are so many different medical diseases that have yet to be discovered, and of course, our natural reaction to any new medical discovery is to freak out – sometimes in the worst way possible,  natural disasters to worry about,  and terrible people out in the world – that wish do to you and your loved ones harm. With things such a West Nile or the Zika virus, hurricane season, and muggers on the brain, the last thing we tend to worry about it our health and if we are getting enough rest.

We know how essential sleep is to function properly in our everyday lives, but why is it that sleep is the most common thing that we ignore throughout our lives? We know that we are avoiding the thing we need most to survive in this world, and yet we are surprised when we are diagnosed with numerous health problems or some sort of disorder. Some disorders are genetic, but tend to worsen due to carelessness of health; others tend to develop because of the ill regard so many of us have towards sleep.

The first disorder I would like to talk about it is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). OSA is when you stop breathing for a short period of time(s) throughout the night. The airway is continuously blocked, preventing oxygen from entering into the body, circulating through the blood, and delivering it to the brain. The lack of oxygen can have some long – term consequences such a high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, etc. OSA is something that can be passed down from your parents, but it is also something that you can develop naturally as well.  It most common signs and symptoms is loud snoring, choking or gasping for air while asleep, and morning headaches.


The next disorder I would like to bring awareness to is narcolepsy. Narcolepsy is a lifelong disorder – there is no cure, and scientists are not sure what causes it. There are theories that it can be passed through genetics, but that is very unlikely. For someone who experiences this sleep disorder, they have to be very careful as to what they are doing throughout the day. It is a very dangerous disorder as it causes said person to feel tremendously exhausted, and in some cases, depending on the severity, encounter uncountable sleep attacks. There are two types of this sleep disorder: Narcolepsy type 1 and Narcolepsy type 2. Type 1 combines daytime sleepiness with one of the two: cataplexy (attacks that lead to sudden loss of muscle tone while you are awake. This can lead to speech impairment, buckling knees, or even paralysis. It is usually brought on by extreme emotions.) or low or absent CSF hypocretin (hypocretin is orexin, which regulates wakefulness. With low hypocretin, someone will find it difficult to stay awake. Said person could have just taken an hour long nap, and when they wake up still feel exhausted). Type 2 is when you experience excessive sleepiness but not cataplexy.


The last sleep disorder I would like to discuss is restless leg syndrome (RLS). RLS is a neurological sleep disorder that causes the overwhelming need for you to move your legs. When you are lying down, trying to relax and unwind, your legs suddenly feel like they are itching or burning, and the only thing you can do is get up and walk around or move your legs. RLS is more likely to develop after the age of 45, and women have a higher chance of being diagnosed with RLS. If RLS runs in your family, it is more than likely that you are going to develop this sleep disorder before the age of 45. There is no known singular cause of this disorder, but there are many different hypothesis s to what my cause or worse symptoms including low iron levels, diabetes, pregnancy, or other medications that you maybe taking.


While there are numerous other sleep disorders out there, these are just a few I wanted to touch on and educate not only myself, but others as well. We should all take the time – no matter how busy we are – to learn about these things as they affect our everyday health, and the health of those around us as well. It is important that we take the time to get the rest that our body needs to function so that we can do our very best to avoid any serious health problems and sleep disorders. For more information about sleep disorders, please speak with your doctor.

For more information on OSA, specifically, please refer to our website –

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