Here are 4 common sleep disorders

Symptoms of insomnia are trouble falling asleep, waking up frequently during the night, or waking up too early in the morning.

What you need to know:

  • Insomnia is linked to stress, anxiety, depression, or pain.
  • Sleep Apnea happens when breathing stops for short periods at night.
  • Narcolepsy affects the brain's ability to control the sleeping and wake up cycle.
  • Restless leg syndrome causes unpleasant sensations in your legs.

Many people regularly experience problems sleeping. One of the most common sleep disorders is insomnia, which is when someone cannot fall asleep or stay asleep. There are many reasons why this might happen: stress, anxiety, depression, and pain all can lead to sleeplessness. Other more severe sleep disorders include narcolepsy and restless leg syndrome.

A sleep disorder is having an issue with the timing, quality, or pattern of your sleep. Sleep disorders are common, alongside many medical problems and mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.

Common types of disorders

  • Insomnia

It usually occurs due to stress, anxiety, depression, or pain of some form. It can last for a while, considerably throwing off your normal day-night cycle. In addition, it could lead to other health issues such as excessive sleeping during the day and poorer health overall.

Symptoms of insomnia are trouble falling asleep, waking up frequently during the night, or waking up too early in the morning.

Treatment: There are many ways to treat insomnia, including relaxation techniques such as meditation and yoga before bedtime, avoiding caffeine after lunch, and creating a relaxing sleep environment with dim lighting and cool temperature.

  • Sleep Apnea

It's a common sleeping problem that happens when your breathing stops for short periods during the night. This can happen hundreds of times which prevents you from getting good quality sleep.

Other symptoms include snoring and gasping or choking sounds while asleep. There are two types of sleep apnea:

  • Central sleep apnea occurs when the brain fails to activate your breathing muscles.

  • Obstructive sleep apnea in which excessive tissue in your throat blocks airways.


Treatment typically includes weight loss if you are overweight, avoiding alcohol before bedtime, maintaining a healthy diet, and in severe cases, using Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine while sleeping.

  • Narcolepsy

It affects the brain's ability to control your sleeping and waking cycle. It causes people suffering from narcolepsy to fall asleep at inappropriate times or even experience hallucinations. In addition, narcoleptics can sometimes experience sudden weak muscle tone, called cataplexy.

Narcolepsy is often linked to a lack of the neurotransmitter called hypocretin. Hypocretin deficiency is caused by the body's immune system mistakenly targeting areas of the brain that generate it.

Symptoms: Falling asleep uncontrollably and repeatedly, even during everyday tasks such as eating, talking, driving, hallucinations, and excessive sleepiness throughout the day.

Treatment: There is no known cure, but behavior change, for example, taking a day nap, can help manage. The doctor may also recommend stimulants for the central nervous system, antidepressants, or medication to help with daytime sleepiness.

  • Restless leg syndrome

It's a fairly common disorder that causes unpleasant sensations in your legs and an irresistible urge to move them so that you can stop the uncomfortable feelings. People suffering from this condition often describe it as creeping, crawling, tingling, or burning.

Other signs might include a decrease in the ability to focus, depression, and irritability. Common causes include depression, kidney diseases, iron deficiency, diabetes, or Parkinson's disease.


There isn't any specific treatment for RLS, but instead, your doctor will recommend different options depending on your symptoms. These include medications such as dopamine that increase the activity in your central nervous system, drugs that improve sleep quality, and iron supplements.

Home remedies for restless legs syndrome include exercising, massage, taking a warm bath, avoiding caffeine before bedtime, and practicing good sleep hygiene.

Preventing sleep disorders

  • Try to maintain a healthy diet.

  • Limit alcohol intake before bedtime.

  • Maintain good sleep hygiene by avoiding caffeine and practicing relaxation techniques, such as meditation or yoga.

  • Make sure that your bedroom is dark, calm, and quiet for the best environment.

  • If you are overweight, avoid eating heavy meals before bedtime.

The best way to avoid sleep disorders is by maintaining a healthy diet, limiting alcohol intake before bedtime, and practicing good sleep hygiene. These three simple yet effective habits can help you get the rest you need for your body and brain. However, if these changes don't work or make things worse, be sure to consult with a doctor about other treatment options available. Remember: getting enough high-quality sleep every night will not only improve your mood but also increase productivity at work!