Posts for tag: narcolepsy
How your sleep specialists in Columbia, SC, can help if you have narcolepsy
Do you feel drowsy during the day, and sometimes fall asleep at inappropriate times? If so, you could have a rare condition known as narcolepsy. Fortunately, it’s a treatable condition, and you need to seek out help from a sleep specialist.
The sleep specialists at Bogan Sleep Consultants in Columbia, SC, offer a wide range of sleep medicine services, including diagnosis and treatment of narcolepsy.
Hundreds of thousands of people in the United States suffer from narcolepsy, according to the National Sleep Foundation. If you are one of them, you already know how disruptive the condition can be.
Narcolepsy is a condition that affects your sleeping and waking cycles. Instead of rapid eye movement or REM cycle occurring later in your sleep cycle, when you have narcolepsy, REM sleep happens within minutes of falling asleep. This causes your entire sleep pattern to be altered.
Narcolepsy has some serious side effects, including:
- Excessive sleepiness during the day
- Automatic behaviors that you are unaware of
- Waking up multiple times during the night
- Inability to move, known as sleep paralysis
- Hallucinations when you fall asleep or wake up
- Sudden loss of muscle control, known as cataplexy
- Restlessness and irritability, often seen in children
Narcolepsy can be a dangerous condition for people who operate machinery, or if you are driving. It is estimated that if you have narcolepsy, you are 3 to 4 times more likely to be involved in a car accident, according to the National Sleep Foundation.
Treatment for narcolepsy begins with a comprehensive examination by a sleep specialist. This can include a sleep study to determine if you do have narcolepsy.
If narcolepsy is confirmed, your sleep specialist may recommend:
- Medication therapy; includes medications to reduce daytime sleepiness and cataplexy
- Behavioral modification; can include incorporating short naps into your day, increased exercise, maintaining a sleep schedule, and limiting sedatives and alcohol.
You can get relief from narcolepsy symptoms. To learn more about the diagnosis and treatment options of narcolepsy, call the sleep specialists of Bogan Sleep Consultants in Columbia, SC, at (803) 251-3093. Call today!
Learn more about the warning signs of narcolepsy.
Our brains are incredibly intricate and complex, and they are able to switch between cycles of sleep and awake. While this is fairly stable for most people, people with narcolepsy have cells within the brain that don’t work properly, which causes the sleep-wake cycles to become unstable. Wondering if you or your child could benefit from visiting our Columbia, SC, sleep physician Dr. Richard Bogan? You may, if you or someone you love is experiencing these symptoms,
Extreme daytime fatigue: Do you find it difficult to get through the day because you’re just so tired all the time? Do you find it challenging to get through your daily routine because of extreme drowsiness and fatigue? While this is a sign of narcolepsy, this can also be a symptom of other sleep disorders so it’s important to see a sleep doctor who can determine what’s causing your symptoms.
Restless sleep: it’s not uncommon for those with narcolepsy to have trouble staying asleep throughout the night. If you find yourself persistently waking up in the middle of the night and unable to fall back to sleep this could be a sign of narcolepsy.
Sleep paralysis: This is a rather scary symptom of narcolepsy and just like the name suggests, sleep paralysis causes the person to feel paralyzed. This only lasts a few seconds or minutes and typically occurs right before falling asleep or when waking up. Sometimes sleep paralysis is accompanied by vivid hallucinations (typically when someone is falling asleep).
What causes narcolepsy?
There are possibly a few things that can be to blame for narcolepsy. While the causes of narcolepsy are still under investigation there are a few factors that could increase your risk for narcolepsy including,
- An autoimmune disorder
- Genetics/family history of narcolepsy
- Previous brain injuries
Here in Columbia, SC, our sleep doctor Dr. Richard Bogan addresses a wide range of sleep problems, from insomnia and obstructive sleep apnea to night terrors in children and narcolepsy. If you are experiencing issues with sleep call Bogan Sleep Consultants today at (803) 251-3093 to schedule a consultation.
Is it daytime sleepiness or could it actually be narcolepsy?
While it’s normal for most people to experience days where they may nod off at the desk or find themselves asleep on their textbook, these bouts of sleepiness aren’t the same as the episodes that occur when one has narcolepsy, a sleep disorder that affects the area of the brain that regulates sleep. Learn more about the signs and symptoms of narcolepsy and how our Columbia, SC, sleep doctor, Dr. Richard Bogan, can help you manage your condition.
What are the warning signs of narcolepsy?
Symptoms of narcolepsy usually appear around the ages of 15 to 25; however, sometimes symptoms appear later or early in life. Symptoms may be mild at first but will usually get worse over time. Common signs of narcolepsy include:
Extreme daytime sleepiness
This is a classic symptom of narcolepsy. Those with narcolepsy will regularly feel exhausted throughout the day despite getting a full night’s sleep. It’s important to note that this symptom is also a sign of other sleep disorders including obstructive sleep apnea, so if you find yourself having trouble staying awake most days, then it may be time to visit a sleep physician at our Columbia, SC, office.
Some patients may experience vivid hallucinations either before falling asleep or upon waking. These hallucinations are primarily visual and can feel incredibly real. Common hallucinations include seeing someone in the room that isn’t there. The symptom can be unnerving and frightening, particularly for children and teens.
Hallucinations may also occur along with feeling paralyzed or unable to move either upon waking or right before falling asleep. This sensation can last anywhere from a few seconds to minutes. Some people may even report feeling unable to breathe while under paralysis. Just like hallucinations, this symptom of narcolepsy can also be scary.
Problems with memory
As you might imagine, when you don’t get the quality sleep your brain is greatly impacted. You feel a loss of energy, and concentration and memory often suffer. Those with narcolepsy usually experience bouts of forgetfulness or have trouble remembering. Memory problems can become particularly severe during moments of exhaustion and sleepiness.
Concerned? Give us a call
Narcolepsy is more common than you might realize, and it’s important to recognize the signs so that you can get a sleep evaluation right away. If you suspect that you or a loved one has narcolepsy, call Bogan Sleep Consultants in Columbia, SC, today at (803) 251-3093 to schedule an appointment.
Narcolepsy is a condition that can dramatically affect the quality of your life. Our Columbia, SC, sleep consultants, Drs. Richard Bogan and Laura Herpel of Bogan Sleep Consultants offer effective treatments that can improve your symptoms.
What is narcolepsy?
Narcolepsy occurs when your brain has difficulty maintaining normal sleep and wake cycles. The neurological condition may affect as many as 200,000 people in the U.S., according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, although the actual number may be much higher due to undiagnosed cases.
What are the symptoms of narcolepsy?
If you have narcolepsy, you may experience one or more of these symptoms:
- Sleepiness During the Day: Daytime drowsiness is one of the most common symptoms of narcolepsy. In some cases, you might fall asleep suddenly and without warning. Sleep periods may only last a few moments but can be dangerous if they occur when you're driving, walking, cooking or operating machinery.
- Cataplexy: Cataplexy can be particularly frightening. It occurs when you have difficulty moving or controlling your muscles when you're awake. It can be as mild as a little weakness in an arm or can involve your entire body.
- Sleep Paralysis: Are you unable to move for a few seconds when you first fall asleep or wake up? You may have sleep paralysis. The condition can also be accompanied by hallucinations.
- Other Symptoms: Insomnia, sleep apnea, periodic leg movements can also occur if you have narcolepsy.
How is narcolepsy treated?
Your Columbia sleep consultant may recommend a sleep study if you have narcolepsy symptoms. The test measures brain activity, oxygen levels, blood pressure, eye movements and heart rate while you sleep and provides valuable information that will help your sleep consultant make a diagnosis.
If you are diagnosed with narcolepsy, your doctor may prescribe medications that decrease drowsiness during the day or reduce cataplexy and sleep paralysis. They may also recommend lifestyle modifications that can help, such as exercise, changing your sleep schedule, reducing stress, and avoiding alcohol and foods or beverages that contain caffeine before sleeping.
Do you need help dealing with narcolepsy? Call your Columbia, SC, sleep consultants, Drs. Richard Bogan and Laura Herpel of Bogan Sleep Consultants, at (803) 251-3093 to schedule an appointment.
Do you find yourself consistently nodding off throughout the day? If so, you may have narcolepsy.
Sure, we all get a bad night’s sleep every once in a while and find ourselves nodding off at our desks. While it is embarrassing, it will generally pass after a better night’s rest—however, if you are someone who has narcolepsy, your brain will have chronic trouble controlling sleep and wakefulness. As a result, you may find yourself wide-awake when you should be sleeping and you may fall asleep throughout the day. From the office of our Columbia, SC, sleep doctor, Dr. Richard Bogan, find out more about narcolepsy and whether your sleep issues may warrant undergoing a sleep study.
What are the warning signs of narcolepsy?
The most obvious symptom is a sudden sleep attack that comes about during the daytime. You may feel so extremely exhausted that you end up falling asleep multiple times throughout the day. These sleep fits can occur for a couple of minutes or even up to a half hour. You may feel great when you first wake up but it won’t soon be long before you start to feel tired again.
Another issue that may coincide with your extreme sleepiness is the loss of muscle control, also known as cataplexy. This can present itself in many different ways, from slurred speech to muscle weakness. It is often triggered by an extreme emotion like laughing or anxiety.
Sleep paralysis is another symptom that those with narcolepsy may experience. This is when someone is unable to move or talk while first falling asleep or immediately upon waking. It lasts only a few seconds or minutes but it can be very scary. While some people may experience sleep paralysis, not all narcoleptics will.
When should I see a sleep specialist?
It is most certainly time to talk with our Columbia, SC, sleep specialist if you are fighting with any kind of sleep problems that are affecting the quality of your sleep as well as your daily routine and quality of life. Experiencing poor sleep day after day can affect both your personal and professional life, so it’s important to find out if your daytime fatigue could be the result of narcolepsy.
Concerned? Give us a call today!
If you are dealing with some of the signs of narcolepsy or are having trouble getting quality sleep, it’s time to call Bogan Sleep Consultants in Columbia, SC, to schedule a consultation with us. Make good sleep a priority by calling (803) 251-3093.