Sleep disorder: Meaning and Types

Sleep disorder is any change in your sleeping habits or patterns that affect your ability to sleep well which negatively affects your health.

Most common types of sleep disorder are;

  • Insomnia
  • Narcolepsy
  • Sleep apnea
  • Sleep paralysis
  • Restless leg syndrome

INSOMNIA: This is a sleep disorder in which you find it difficult to fall asleep or staying asleep even when you feel tired. It involves waking up at night and not being able to sleep again. It’s causes have been related to stress, traumatic or upsetting experience, changes to your sleep habit.

NARCOLEPSY: A chronic neurological disorder that affects sleep regulation. It is a disorder of the nervous system that causes abnormal sleep. It is characterized by daytime drowsiness, and sleep attack. It sometimes causes sudden temporal loss of muscle tone.

SLEEP APNEA: It is a common sleep disorder affecting your breathing pattern during sleep. It is a condition in which your breathing stops and starts while sleeping.
You will unknowingly stop breathing repeatedly throughout sleep. Once your airway is opened, you may snort, take a deep breath, or awaken completely with a sensation of gasping or smothering. Its symptoms include loud snoring, restless sleep, and daytime sleepiness.

SLEEP PARALYSIS: This is an undesired event that occurs after falling asleep or upon waking up. It is a feeling of being unable to move your body while sleeping or while trying to wake up. It may be accompanied by hallucinations and fears resulting in anxiety. During sleep paralysis, your mind is conscious but you cannot move your body.

RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME: This is a disorder of the nervous system that causes you a strong urge to move your legs. It is considered a sleep disorder because it usually occurs at night or while at rest. It’s symptoms range from mild to unbearable.

It is characterized by;

  • Unusual feeling in the leg such as itching, pulling, throbbing, e.t.c
  • Very powerful urge to move your
  • Inability to sleep or sit for long.

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