Sleep is a Vital Part of Life

Sleep is a Vital Part of Life

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Sleep is a part of daily routine that is vital for a person to be able to function adequately throughout the day. Without a sufficient amount of sleep, or problems during sleep, a person could have a tougher time trying to focus and operate throughout the course of the day. There are two major categories of sleep disorders: dyssomnias and parasomnias.

• Dyssomnia is more focused on conflicts when trying to sleep or staying up. It could be instances such as waking up throughout the night, suddenly falling asleep during the day, or failing to breathe for a moment when sleeping. There are different variations of dyssomnia:
o Insomnia is the most frequent form of dyssomnia there is. It is when a person has trouble trying to sleep, wakes up throughout the night, or wakes up too early in the morning. Different causes of insomnia can be stress or anxiety before bed, or something as simple as not being in a comfortable setting to sleep in. More serious cases are typically categorized with other medical or mental disorders. Treatments for insomnia are generally prescription medications such as Xanax or Lunesta for short-term use.
o Another more serious form of dyssomnia is narcolepsy. Narcolepsy is when a person feels the unexpected need to sleep throughout the normal times to be awake during the day. People that suffer from narcolepsy normally experience falling asleep suddenly while being active while like walking or driving, extreme muscle weakness or the inability to move at all during an attack. The exact causes or treatments for narcolepsy are unknown, except that taking a long nap during the day or taking antidepressants could lessen the occurrences of sudden attacks.
o One more serious form of dyssomnia is sleep apnea. It is characterized by failing to breathe momentarily while sleeping, and then breathe sharply to catch their breath back. The causes of sleep apnea can be blocked airway passages or the brain failing to send signals to the diaphragm. There are a number of treatments for sleep apnea such as exercising and losing and maintain weight if necessary, avoiding drinking alcohol, sleeping on the side of the body or using machines to keep the airway open.
• Parasomnia is the other major aspect of sleep disorders. It has to do with unusual disturbances during sleep rather than conflicts trying to sleep or staying up.
o Nightmares and night terrors are two forms of parasomnias. Nightmares normally ensue more towards the end of the sleep cycle whereas night terrors occur earlier in the sleep cycle.

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Both cause feelings of fear and anxiety when the person wakes up, but in the occurrence of a nightmare a person can vividly describe what went on, and in a night terror a person wakes up unable to communicate or respond to anyone and they normally do not remember what happened the next day. Night terrors can also be something that is hereditary. The causes of these can both be from emotional issues; nightmares can also stem from being sick or a side-effect of a medication.
o Sleepwalking and sleep talking are another two forms of parasomnias. Sleepwalking usually occurs when a night terror is taking place. People do not remember when they sleep walk and it is not dangerous to wake a person that sleep walks, it normally occurs to grade-school children but it can also occur to anyone else. It is not dangerous to wake a person that sleep walks but it is dangerous to let someone continue sleep walking depending on their surroundings. Sleep talking can occur during any stage of sleep but it is pretty much harmless – the most harm it can possibly do is disturb roommates unless it gets to a point of violent noises is when people normally get it checked out. Causes of sleep talking have to do with stress, medications, disorders or substance addiction. In any case of these four parasomnias, the recommended treatments are to be patient and consoling to the person that has it.
At any point in a person’s life, they are likely to suffer from some type of sleep disorder. Some are hazardous to the daily functions of life and some are pretty much harmless. The best thing to do in any case of a sleep disorder though, is that when it reaches a point that it interferes with being able to function decently during the day to see a doctor and have loved ones around that are willing to help and offer assistance to the treatments of any disorders.



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