Overview of Hypersomnia: Excessive Sleepiness

Are you tired today? Are you tired everyday? If you answered yes then chances are that you suffer from hypersomnia, a sleep disorder defined as excessive sleepiness. This may not sound as serious as it is. People suffering from hypersomnia can fall asleep at any time during the day. This can include while driving or working. They may also have a lack of energy and difficulty thinking clearly. Let’s dig a little deeper into the potential causes, diagnosis, and treatment of hypersomnia.

Hypersomnia can be caused by any number of reasons. Two common reasons are narcolepsy and sleep apnea. Both of those separate conditions cause the sufferer to lack good, substantial sleep. This then causes hypersomnia during the day. Other reasons include general sleep deprivation, prescription medications that interfere with sleep, heredity, drug or alcohol abuse, a head injury or neurological disease, or being overweight. Any one of these reasons, or combination of reasons can cause hypersomnia.

If you are suffering from the symptoms of hypersomnia then it is time to go to the doctor and look for a diagnosis. Be prepared to give a detailed account of your sleeping habits. This will include how much you sleep at night, if you are waking up at night, and if you are falling asleep during the day. Also be prepared to discuss your emotional state and any medications you take. Once the doctor has heard all you have to say, he will probably order some tests. He will probably order blood work and may or may not order a CT scan, EEG, and a sleep study. Any of these tests can be used to diagnose hypersomnia.

The treatment of hypersomnia is directly related to the reason behind the condition. If your hypersomnia is due to sleep apnea, then you will be provided with a CPAP machine, which delivers a continuous flow of air through the nose all night. If you are suffering from narcolepsy, then it can be treated with medication. Other medications that may help alleviate hypersomnia include antidepressants and stimulants. If the hypersomnia is due to a medication you are currently taking then the doctor will reevaluate you and prescribe a different medication if there is one available. If these treatments don’t work or you do not want to utilize them, then it is important to attempt to regulate your nighttime sleep. This means that an hour before bedtime you should stay away from the television and computer as well as nicotine since they are all stimulants and could keep you from falling asleep. It may also be necessary to eliminate alcohol and caffeine. These are the current treatments available for hypersomnia.

The diagnosis and treatment of hypersomnia is fairly easy, so don’t suffer through daytime drowsiness any longer. If your brain feels cloudy and you feel excessively sleepy often during the day then consider going to the doctor and being evaluated for hypersomnia. Excessive sleepiness can lead to negligence and harmful accidents. It is important that hypersomnia be diagnosed and treated. You will enjoy life a lot more when you are awake to live it.

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