Understanding Hypersomnia

Updated at: Sep 19, 2018
Understanding Hypersomnia

Hypersomnia is characterized by recurrent episodes of excessive daytime drowsiness or prolonged nighttime sleep, and could be risky in many situations.

Arka Roy Chowdhury
Children's HealthWritten by: Arka Roy ChowdhuryPublished at: Jan 17, 2018

While insomnia is a common term which means the inability to sleep; hypersomnia on the other hand, is a condition wherein a person has trouble in staying awake; which basically means a condition of excessive sleepiness. There can be two types of hypersomnia, and you may be suffering from any of these two. One is the primary hypersomnia, the second is secondary hypersomnia.

People suffering from hypersomnia can fall asleep anytime, which means that an activity such as driving can be very risky for them. Such people can also suffer from other sleep-related problems including lack of energy and also trouble in thinking clearly.

Quite surprisingly it is not a rare disease, almost up to 40 percent of the people has had at least a few symptoms of hypersomnia from time to time. One of the main symptoms of having hypersomnia is excessive daytime sleeping, which means your days roll away with a lullaby. This has been found to be higher in men as compared to women.

Why Hypersomnia?

One potential cause for hypersomnia is a sleep disorder known as narcolepsy or daytime sleepiness, and also sleep apnea which means interruptions of breathing during sleep. Apart from these two, other reasons could be as follows:

•  Not enough sleep at night, which is also known as sleep deprivation.
•  If the person is overweight.
•  If the person is using excessive drug or alcohol.
•  If a person experiences a head injury or any neurological disease.
•  Certain prescription drugs can cause this.
•  A person’s genetics.

It is very important for you to visit your doctor if you are sleeping excessively during the day. You will have to discuss your sleeping habits to your doctor and your sleep cycle needs to be defined well. Following this, you may also be asked to run some tests so that your doctor is absolutely sure that it is not caused by any underlying diseases. Also, a brain test can be done that will monitor the activities of your brain.

The doctor may prescribe you various drugs for getting rid of this problem. These drugs include stimulants and antidepressants as well as some newer medications.

Read more articles on Hypersomnia.


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