Sleep Disorders

If you are sleeping 7-8 hours per night but are still extremely tired, you may have one of the following sleep disorders:

Insomnia
Most people have experienced some insomnia, which is the inability to sleep. True insomniacs, however, regularly have a problem getting to sleep or staying asleep. Causes can be psychological (depression), environmental (excessive noise) or the result of various health issues.

Narcolepsy
This condition is characterized by frequent, uncontrollable urges to sleep at inappropriate times—such as at work, driving or while engaged in other activities. Narcoleptics might experience hallucinations, terrifying dreams or a brief sense of paralysis at the onset of sleep. It is a lifelong medical disorder that responds well to treatment.

Periodic Limb Movement Disorder (PLMD)
People with PLMD (nocturnal myoclonus) experience involuntary muscle spasms in their arms or legs that can range from the barely visible to wild kicking and flailing. This disorder can result in fatigue, sleepiness and insomnia.

Parasomnias
These clinical disorders are physical in nature and include:

  • Nightmares, which are frightening and afflict any age group.
  • Night terrors, which usually occur in young children who suddenly wake up screaming or crying.
  • Sleepwalking, sleep talking and bedwetting, which also occur in children.

Parasomnias can be evaluated at the Covenant HealthCare Sleep Center to determine if the cause is benign or a symptom of sleep-related epileptic seizures.

Sleep Apnea & Snoring
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a common problem among all age groups. It is caused from the airway closing during sleep. These closures result in decreases in oxygen levels in the blood, frequent short awakenings from sleep to open the airway and finally, gasping for breath. The decrease in oxygen levels can lead to changes in heart rate or rhythm, impaired memory and inflammation in the arteries. Commonly noted symptoms are: snoring, excessive daytime sleepiness, weight gain, depression or mood disorders, high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. Many other less common symptoms may also be present.

If you have a problem with sleep, call the Covenant Sleep Center at 989.583.2930.

To learn more about sleep disorders, visit the American Academy of Sleep Medicine's sleep education website.