The Sleep Disorders Center at Hunterdon Medical Center treats many types of sleep disorders. Here are the most common sleep disorders.
- Sleep apnea is a medical disorder in which a person, usually a loud snorer, experiences an obstruction in the throat during sleep. Lack of sufficient air causes the individual to awaken, usually with a cough or a gasp that opens the airway. Airflow is re-established and breathing resumes during the next episode. People with sleep apnea have to wake up briefly to breathe, sometimes hundreds of times during the night, although there is no memory of these brief awakenings.
- Periodic Limb Movement Syndrome may coexist with obstructive sleep apnea. Multiple jerking movements, typically of the legs, awaken those with the disorder repeatedly through the night.
- Restless Legs Syndrome is a condition involving sensations in the legs, and sometimes arms, while the individual is awake. The sensations usually occur when the individual is lying down and the only relief is to move the limbs, keeping the individual awake.
- Narcolepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness. Individuals with narcolepsy fall asleep at inappropriate, and occasionally, dangerous times.
- Insomnia refers to a chronic inability to initiate or sustain sleep, resulting in sleep deprivation and daytime fatigue. There are numerous causes for insomnia, including stress, anxiety, depression, chronic illness, medications, poor sleep habits and circadian rhythm disorders. Occasionally, a sleep study may be part of the evaluation, especially if obstructive sleep apnea is contributing.
Sleep disorders are associated with a long list of medical problems, including:
- heart attack
- irregular heartbeat
- high blood pressure
- heart failure
Justin Pi, MDPulmonary/Critical Care
Carol J. Yuan-Duclair, MDPulmonary/Critical Care
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