Sleep Disorder: Narcolepsy, What You Need to Know and How to Deal With It

Narcolepsy is basically a neurological disorder that affects the control of sleep and wakefulness, which also falls into the category of sleep disorder. People with this disorder experiences excessive daytime sleepiness and irregular uncontrollable episodes of falling asleep during the day. These conditions attack at any time of the day may occur suddenly during any type of activity you are having.

This may sound ridiculous especially on falling asleep while doing an activity but this sleep disorder actually poses a great threat to one’s health since it also exposes the sufferer to external threats such as mobile vehicular accidents. Want to know more about narcolepsy and its dreadful effects to one’s health? Here is the gathered data for this sleep disorder about the things you need to know and how to deal with it.

Symptoms of Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy’s symptoms have four main conditions: excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), cataplexy, hallucinations, and sleep paralysis. So, before jumping on dealing with this disorder, you should know first its symptoms to know what narcolepsy is composed of.

Excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS)

Generally, excessive daytime sleepiness, as what was stated beforehand, interferes with your activities on a daily basis at any time of the day, you may be doing your homework or eating lunch, this condition attacks anytime.

People which suffers this condition reports mental cloudiness, with a lack of concentration and energy and have instances of memory lapses. This condition is mostly caused by lack of sleep—which is the most common cause of excessive sleepiness.

Cataplexy

Cataplexy is a sudden loss of muscle tone which leads to feelings of weakness and loss of voluntary muscle control which also only occurs if you have narcolepsy, unlike the excessive daytime sleepiness that is another type of sleep disorder.

This symptom also occurs when you have a sleep attack triggered by an intense emotion which may result in slurring of speech or loss of control of your limbs, or maybe even completely paralyzed. Also, narcolepsy with cataplexy is often linked to an increase in weight, sometimes obesity.

Hallucinations

Hypnagogic hallucinations are delusional experiences that are vivid and often frightening. This is primarily visual but any other of your senses can be heightened and involved. This condition is occasionally prolonged and occurs at the transition from wakefulness to sleep (hypnagogic) or from sleep to wakefulness (hypnopompic).

Sleep paralysis

Sleep paralysis is the inability to move or speak temporarily which occurs when you’re waking up or falling asleep. This episode is generally brief but can be a really terrifying experience for the sufferer. Sleep paralysis is often caused by not getting enough sleep, irregular sleeping patterns, a family history of sleep paralysis, and sleeping on your back. For healthy people, sleep paralysis occurs occasionally.

How to Deal with Narcolepsy?

Narcolepsy still doesn’t have a cure up to this date but symptoms can be controlled by taking drug treatments prescript by the doctor. Sleepiness can be treated with amphetamine-like stimulants; while on the other hand, the symptoms of an abnormal REM sleep can be treated with antidepressant drugs.

Recently, there has been a new medication approved for those who suffered from this narcolepsy with cataplexy called Xyrem. This drug helps people with this sleep disorder get a better night’s sleep allowing them to have a controllable sleepiness during the day. To conclude, patients of narcolepsy can be helped through drug treatments but not fully cured.

Additionally, lifestyle adjustments should also be highly considered. A good quality sleep through good sleep hygiene should be your main priority. Read some researches about sleep through counting sheep research to help you properly plan a sleep hygiene and routine for a good night’s sleep.

Takeaway

Narcolepsy is just one of the dreadful sleep disorders out there waiting to be triggered when you poorly take good care of your health by not getting enough sleep. People nowadays tend to neglect sleep due to many reasons. However, no reason should make sleep less of a priority. The pursuit of healthy sleeping by reading up counting sheep research for more information about sleep hygiene and the factors needed for you to have a good night’s rest.