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Sleep Problems & Disorders

Helping Veterans Sleep

Sleep loss is a widespread problem, and military veterans are particularly susceptible. Vets are four times as likely to have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). In addition, those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or a traumatic brain injury have a higher incidence of OSA, meaning that psychiatric and sleep disorders are often linked. Research-based sleep techniques are being developed for those with PTSD, so it’s important to seek specialized help. Warning signs of sleep trouble: Sleep troubles can look different depending on the person, but it’s important to seek help if you have warning signs such as,Mood symptoms like lack of motivation, depression or anxiety that interfere in work or daily life. Lack of…

Sleep Problems That Keep Kids Up at Night

Any parent knows that a child’s bedtime troubles don’t end after he moves out of the crib. Kids of all ages can have trouble sleeping through the night for a variety of reasons—some of which may surprise you. Identifying the root cause of your little one’s sleep issues can help the whole family get better rest. To help you get started, read on for five reasons why kids may lie awake at night. Wetting the Bed Middle-of-the-night accidents are fairly common (15 percent of children will wet the bed by age five). They can be caused by genetics, a small bladder, constipation, sleeping very deeply, and, in rare cases, an underlying medical condition. While accidents…

Alzheimer’s And Sleep

A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease (the most common form of dementia, which affects 5.3 million people) can be scary and confusing—for the person affected, as well as family members and friends. Learn how the disease can affect someone’s sleep, so you know what to expect and how you can help. If you’re a caregiver, try to help the patient understand the following.Nighttime Awakenings Are Common.Dementia often causes a change in sleep patterns. In fact, as many as 50 percent of those who have mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s experience insomnia or increased napping. It’s still unclear exactly how sleep troubles and Alzheimer’s are linked—less sleep may lead to Alzheimer’s or maybe Alzheimer’s causes the sleep…

What is Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder?

Everyone has trouble falling asleep once in a while. But for some extreme night owls, going to bed at a normal time—and waking up when they need to for school or work—is a challenge every night. Delayed sleep phase disorder (DSPD), also called delayed sleep phase syndrome or delayed sleep phase type, is just that: not being able to fall asleep within at least two hours of when you want to. People with DSPD generally don’t have trouble getting good quality sleep once they do drift off. But staying up late often means not having time to log enough sleep before morning. Not surprisingly, daytime sleepiness can be a common problem, but that’s…

What Is REM Behavior Disorder?

If you suffer from this rare sleep disorder, having a scary dream can lead to a dangerous situation. You may take for granted the fact that, no matter how scary a dream may get, in the real world you are actually just sleeping safely in your bed. But that isn’t the case if you have a sleep disorder known as REM behavior disorder (RBD). People who suffer from RBD physically move their bodies while dreaming—and sometimes they even get out of bed and react to what is happening in their dreams. Dreaming happens during only the REM stage of sleep, a phase of sleep that happens a few times a night. During…

What Are Some Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders?

Discover whether one of these five sleep disorders is keeping you from your best night’s rest. If you have a hard time falling asleep and waking up when you need to, you might have what’s known as a circadian rhythm sleep disorder. Typically, your body clock regulates a regular daily rhythm of temperature and hormone levels that—combined with other factors like light exposure, meals, and exercise—tells you when it’s time to sleep at night and be awake during the day. Sometimes, however, the rhythms get off course, resulting in poor sleep and daytime drowsiness. There are a variety of these disorders—and if one sounds like it might be what you have, talk to your…

Should I Visit a Sleep Clinic?

Find out whether or not a sleep clinic may help you fix your slumber problems. You’ve tried warm milk, soothing music, an earlier bedtime, a new mattress, melatonin…the list goes on and on, but you’re still staring at the ceiling every night unable to sleep. Before you resign yourself to a life of counting sheep, know that a sleep clinic could help you get the rest you need. What Is a Sleep Clinic? Many sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and insomnia can be difficult to pinpoint while you’re awake, so doctors use sleep clinics to monitor patients overnight. While most sleep studies are set up to resemble private hotel rooms (to…

What is Narcolepsy?

This disorder involves a lot more than falling asleep in the middle of a sentence. Narcolepsy, which affects about one in 2,000 people, is a sleep disorder that causes a person to instantly fall into a deep sleep at any time, even in the middle of an activity. Those unplanned sleep attacks aren’t very long—usually just a few seconds to a few minutes—but they can have a huge impact on a person’s quality of life. Imagine falling asleep in the middle of chatting with your boss, eating dinner with your family, or driving a car. It’s not only embarrassing, it’s dangerous. On top…

Interrupted Sleep: What Happens To Your Body

Waking up throughout the night does a lot more than make you exhausted. There are lots of reasons why you might spend a restless night waking up every few hours, checking the clock, and feeling disappointed that it’s still nowhere near morning. Maybe there’s a new baby who has to be fed regularly, a sick dog who needs frequent trips to the backyard, neighbors who have rocking parties, or just a racing brain that makes staying asleep tough. Whatever the cause, you’re bound to wake up tired the next morning. But that’s not all. There are a few other ways that waking up often throughout the night affects your physical and mental health.Your Brain Isn’t…

How to Prevent Neck Pain While Sleeping

Check to see if you’re making one of these ouch-inducing bedtime mistakes. Neck pain can be a real, well, pain in the neck. While some causes—like the wear and tear of aging, arthritis, or even an injury like a slipped disk—may be out of your control, many common triggers are things that you can control, like the way you’re hitting the hay at night. Check out if something on the following list is causing that crick in your neck. Your Pillow A pillow is supposed to position your head so that it’s in a healthy, neutral position. That means that your nose is in line with the center of your body, or your spine. If you…