Sleep Disorders

Common Sleep Disorders:

  • Circadian Rhythm Disorders
  • Excessive Sleepiness
  • Insomnia
  • Narcolepsy
  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea
  • Parasomnias
  • Periodic Limb Movement Disorders
  • Restless Legs Syndrome

Sleep Disorder Symptoms:

If you experience one or more of these symptoms, discuss your sleeping problems with your healthcare provider.

  • Excessive sleepiness or fatigue during the day
  • Difficulty sleeping, including trouble falling asleep, waking frequently during the night, waking too early, not being able to fall back asleep, or waking unrefreshed
  • Loud snoring
  • Pauses in breathing or gasping for breath during sleep, as reported by others
  • Difficulty concentrating or memory problems
  • Irritability or depression
  • Morning headaches
  • Nighttime leg discomfort or movement of your arms and legs while you sleep
  • Weakness or loss of muscle strength, often in response to strong emotion
  • Sleepwalking or sleep talking
  • Hypertension, or high blood pressure

Factors that may cause sleep problems:

  • Lifestyle factors, including eating, drinking and exercise habits
  • Environmental factors, noise, bedding and interruptions by children or pets
  • Shift work and jet lag. Both disrupt your biological clock
  • Medications. Medications used to treat breathing disorders, heart problems, arthritis and depressions can all have an affect on sleep. Even over the counter medicine can affect sleep or daytime alertness. Do not stop taking any prescription medications before talking with your doctor.
  • Psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and stress.
  • Medical Problems. Many chronic conditions can worsen during sleep, causing mid-sleep awakenings and daytime fatigue. Some common medical problems that can affect sleep are high blood pressure, pain, acid reflux, enlarged prostate and asthma.
  • Hormonal Factors
  • Melatonin, this naturally occurring hormone that informs the body and brain when to sleep.

How sleep orders are diagnosed:

Sleep specialists use the following information to diagnose a sleep disorder. Your sleep specialist will give you a complete physical exam.

  • Physical exam
  • Sleep diary
  • Detailed history
  • Sleep studies
  • Other testing

Once you are diagnosed with a sleep disorder, there are several safe and effective options for treatment. Treatment varies by disorder but can include changes to sleep habits, medications, medical devices and surgery.

Return to the Missouri Sleep Institute.

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