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Sometimes, you can’t sleep, or maybe you can’t stay awake. For millions of people, sleep can actually be a nightmare. One of the biggest reasons for this is sleep disorders.
Between 50 to 70 million people in the U.S. battle with sleep disorders, and it’s slow causing their health to deteriorate. Here are six of the most common sleep disorders.
Sleep Disorder: Insomnia
You can’t sleep. You can’t sleep. You stare at the ceiling every night because you simply can’t sleep. For some, this is just a brief thing brought on by stress or possibly something else. For others, insomnia can turn into a dangerous night-after-night occurrence. According to the CDC, 1 in 3 adults aren’t getting enough sleep.
Nearly 30 percent of all Americans deal with some form of insomnia with 10 percent dealing with long-lasting insomnia. Not sleeping well can be devastating to your overall health. Almost 40 percent of people report accidentally falling asleep during the day, while 5 percent admit falling asleep while driving.
Lifestyle changes might help, as well as keeping a healthy bedtime routine, such as going to bed at the same time each night and waking up at the same time each morning. If you’re still dealing with insomnia after that, talk with your doctor about using sleep aids.
Sleep Disorder: Narcolepsy
Feeling drowsy throughout the day for no good reason? Or how about the urgent need to sleep regardless of where you are? Around 135,000 to 200,000 people in the U.S. deal with some form of narcolepsy. That being said, since this sleep disorder often goes undiagnosed, the number might be higher.
Unfortunately, there isn’t really a cure for narcolepsy but, just like insomnia, there are lifestyle changes that can help, including taking short naps, maintaining a regular sleep schedule, don’t smoke, exercise, etc. There are also medications that help make this sleep disorder a little easier to manage.
Sleep Disorder: Sleep Apnea
It’s estimated that one in 15 adults in the United States have sleep apnea, which equals 18 million people. Approximately 80 percent of these people are undiagnosed. Although men are at a higher risk of sleep apnea than women, both sexes can suffer from this sleep disorder.
Basically, sleep apnea occurs when the muscles in your throat relax after you fall asleep. As a result, soft tissue in the back of the throat collapses and blocks the airway. This leads to either a reduction in breathing, or hypopnea, or pause in breathing, also known as an apnea.
Again, lifestyle changes can help, but many people have to rely on a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine so they can sleep well throughout the night.
Sleep Disorder: Restless Legs Syndrome
If you have an uncontrollable and often uncomfortable urge to move your legs or feet (usually on both sides of the body), you might have Restless Legs Syndrome, or RLS. While this sensation can happen when you're sitting, most of the symptoms occur during the night, which can interrupt sleep.
People who have this condition describe a myriad of sensations, including crawling, creeping, itching, aching, and throbbing. Relief comes from movement. What causes RLS? That's often tough to know, but family history and pregnancy and hormonal changes can play a role.
Getting regular exercise, avoiding caffeine, taking a warm bath, getting leg massages, practicing good sleep hygiene, applying cold or warm packs on your limbs, and using an RLS-designed foot wrap are all good ways to help deal with this sleep disorder.
Your doctor might also prescribe medication or check to see if you have an iron deficiency, which can accompany symptoms of RLS.
Sleep Disorder: Night Terrors
Imagine having a nightmare from which you can’t wake up. Scary, right? That is basically the definition of night terrors. This sleep disorder, usually affecting children more than adults, causes you to experience a nightmare while you scream and flail about, but you’re still asleep.
These bouts can last from a few seconds to a few minutes and might require treatment if they cause problems getting enough sleep or pose a safety risk. Illness, sleep disruptions and deprivation, and stress can cause night terrors. It’s rare for anyone past their teen years to have night terrors, but it does still happen. If you suffer from this sleep disorder as an adult, talk with your doctor.
Sleep Disorder: Sleepwalking
The rumors are not true – it’s OK to wake up someone who’s sleepwalking. Granted, they might be disoriented, but it won’t hurt them.
As for sleepwalking itself, it isn’t limited to someone walking around while they’re asleep. Sometimes people can dress themselves, run, do weird things around the house, usually for about 10 minutes or so. Afterward, the person either goes back to bed or wakes up wondering why they’re wearing pajamas and a tie in the kitchen at 3 in the morning.
The good news is that sleepwalking tends to happen less often as you get older, so you don’t have to worry about treatment. That being said, if you are dealing with this sleep disorder a lot as an adult, you should talk with your doctor to figure out the cause and how to fix it.
Find Your Best Sleep Here
One thing to know is that if you don’t have a good mattress and pillow, it doesn’t matter what sleep disorder you have – it’s going to be hard to sleep. That’s why you have to find a mattress that fits your unique body and sleep style.
The sleep experts at Mattress Warehouse are trained to listen to your concerns and needs to better help you find the perfect mattress. And with bedMATCH®, our patented diagnostic sleep system, we use science to help you find the perfect fit, not high-pressure sales tactics.
Visit your local Mattress Warehouse store today to get your best sleep!