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Common Sleep Disorders: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Common Sleep Disorders: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

If you’ve ever had trouble sleeping, then you’ve probably wondered what caused it. There are many causes of sleep disorders, and the causes can be both physical and psychological in nature. While poor-quality sleep can lead to a multitude of issues with your health, some common sleep disorders may not pose any risks to your health at all. By knowing the symptoms of these conditions and how they affect your sleep habits, you can start taking steps toward treating common sleep disorders:


Dyssomnias are sleep disorders that cause disruptions in a person’s sleep. They are common, and they can affect a person’s well-being in many ways.

What is Dyssomnia?

Dyssomnia is a term used to describe the inability to fall asleep or stay asleep. The most common type of dyssomnia is difficulty staying asleep, which is seen in about 80% of people with insomnia. A second type of dyssomnia involves having difficulty staying awake during the day—this is called daytime sleepiness.

Causes of Dyssomnias

There are many different causes for dyssomnias, including physical conditions such as heart disease and obstructive sleep apnea; mental health issues such as depression or anxiety; environmental stressors such as noise or light; medications that can interfere with sleep; and lifestyle factors like alcohol use or heavy exercise before bedtime.

Treatments for Dyssomnias

In order to treat dyssomnias successfully, it’s important to first identify what type of disorder you have so that you can take the appropriate steps toward treatment. If your problem seems psychological in nature, you may need to seek out a professional who specializes in this area. Here are some of the tips you can try

  • Try to sleep in a quiet, dark room and avoid any bright lights or loud noises.
  • Stay away from caffeine after noon.
  • Avoid alcohol and stimulants (caffeine and nicotine) before bedtime.
  • Eat a small snack before bedtime, such as an apple or a piece of bread with peanut butter on top.


If you’ve ever woken up in the middle of the night, not knowing what happened and feeling like you were sleep-walking, then you may have experienced parasomnias. Parasomnias are common sleep disorders that can occur at any time of day or night. Parasomnias can be divided into two categories: REM-sleep parasomnias and non-REM sleep parasomnias. Non-REM parasomnias are more common and include things like sleepwalking, nightmares, and sleep-driving. The most common REM-sleep parasomnia is sleep paralysis.


The causes of parasomnias are different for each individual but often include environmental factors such as noise levels, medications taken during the day (including alcohol), certain foods consumed during the day (such as caffeine), and circadian rhythm disturbances.


Treatments for parasomnias include behavioural management strategies such as relaxation techniques or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). A qualified healthcare professional will help determine which type of treatment is best suited for your needs based on age and severity of symptoms

Intrinsic Sleep Disorders

Intrinsic sleep disorders are common, and they can be difficult to diagnose. The causes of these disorders are not always clear, and the treatments differ from disorder to disorder. Here’s what you need to know:

What is an intrinsic sleep disorder?

Intrinsic sleep disorders are conditions that cause problems during the stages of sleep. They include insomnia, narcolepsy, and circadian rhythm sleep disorders (CRSDs). They’re also sometimes called delayed sleep phase syndrome (DSPS) or non-24-hour circadian rhythm sleep disorder (N24-CRSD).

Causes: The causes of intrinsic sleep disorders can vary depending on which type of intrinsic sleep disorder you have—for example, some people have more severe symptoms of narcolepsy if they also have other health issues such as depression or anxiety. But in general, some factors may be linked with each type of disorder:

Age: Intrinsic CRSDs tend to occur more commonly in children and young adults than in older adults because this age group is still developing brain chemistry that regulates circadian rhythms.


Treatments for intrinsic sleep disorders include lifestyle changes such as exercise and better nutrition as well as medications for secondary conditions such as ADHD or depression.


Insomnia is a common sleep disorder that affects millions of people worldwide.

What is Insomnia?

Sleep disruption is common in the general population, but it can be more severe for some people. Sleep disorders, including insomnia, are diagnosed when a person has difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Insomnia is a very common sleep disorders. It affects about 30% of American adults and 40% of people over age 65.


There are many possible causes for insomnia, including stress and anxiety, irregular sleep patterns (such as staying up late or sleeping too much at night), medical conditions like depression or high blood pressure, and substance use disorders (including alcoholism).


Many people with insomnia find that cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) helps them manage their condition better than any other treatment option does. CBT aims to change how thoughts affect mood and behaviour by teaching patients how to identify negative thoughts (like “I’m worthless”)

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a common, potentially life-threatening disorder in which breathing stops or becomes shallow during sleep. It can cause daytime fatigue, headaches, and other symptoms. The condition affects millions of Americans, but it’s rarely discussed in the mainstream media.


The causes of sleep apnea are poorly understood. It’s thought that people with the condition have more trouble regulating their breathing than others do—but it’s not clear why this would happen. Some experts believe that some people may be born with a predisposition for the condition; others believe that there may be environmental factors that contribute to its development.


Treating sleep apnea depends on its cause. If your symptoms are caused by an underlying medical issue such as heart disease or stroke, then you’ll likely need treatment from your doctor or another specialist who specializes in those types of conditions. If you’re experiencing severe breathing problems during the day but aren’t showing any symptoms at night (or if your doctor suspects a medical issue), then you may be treated with a CPAP machine or other similar devices that help keep airways open during sleep. Sleep apnea treatments include:

– Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines that help keep airways open during sleep and prevent them from collapsing;

– Oral appliances that help maintain the shape of your mouth while you sleep;

– Medications like oral steroids, which can help reduce inflammation in your airways;

It can be difficult to pinpoint a sleep disorder, let alone the cause of one. Common sleep disorders may have common symptoms, but the causes for those symptoms may vary depending on the specific condition. Fortunately, most sleep disorders are treatable, usually with self-care methods or medication.

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