Narcolepsy is an incredibly rare, but debilitating sleep disorder that affects the overall health and wellness of the person who suffers from it. Narcolepsy is the excessive daytime sleepiness that can cause a person to fall asleep or be so sleepy that they cannot function properly. Along with the excessive sleepiness, many people also suffer from hallucinations and other disabling sleep disorders that make it difficult to hold a job or normal relationship. To get the quality sleep you need, when you need it, schedule your appointment at Integra Health in Temecula today.
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine defines narcolepsy as “a neurological sleep disorder that causes a potentially disabling level of daytime sleepiness” that causes overwhelming “sleep attacks.” True narcolepsy is not caused by insufficient sleep and many people awake feeling rested and then suffer from sleepiness most of the day. Fortunately, narcolepsy is quite rare, affecting less than 1% of the American population.
Type 1 narcolepsy (commonly referred to as narcolepsy with cataplexy) is a form of narcolepsy caused by the person either having low levels of a hypocretin or reporting cataplexy — is a sudden, brief loss of voluntary muscle tone triggered by strong emotions such as laughter — and having excessive daytime sleepiness on a special nap test.
Type 2 narcolepsy occurs when a person experiences excessive daytime sleepiness but usually does not have muscle weakness. The person typically experiences less severe symptoms and has normal levels of hypocretin.
Secondary narcolepsy can result from an injury to the hypothalamus, a portion of the brain that helps regulate sleep. In addition to experiencing the typical symptoms of narcolepsy, a person with secondary narcolepsy may also have severe neurological problems and sleep for long periods each night — in excess of 10 hours!
Of those who suffer from narcolepsy, most also suffer from accompanying sleep disorders
10-20% Obstructive and central sleep apnea
40-60% Periodic limb movements
10-30% REM sleep behavior disorder
20% Sleepwalking, sleep talking, and/or night terrors.
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