Everyone has days when they feel sleepy. However, hypersomnia – which refers to excessive sleeping or excessive daytime sleepiness – is different from feeling tired all of the time.
iSLeep Program, a reputable sleep disorder center in New York City, New York, discusses the signs of hypersomnia, possible causes, who are at risk, and tips to avoid it.
Signs and Symptoms of Hypersomnia
Here are some of the common signs and symptoms of hypersomnia:
- Excessive Daytime Sleepiness
- Excessive Sleep (10 or more hours of nighttime sleep, with daytime naps)
- Difficult Waking from Sleep
- Constant Tiredness
- Taking Long, Unrefreshing Naps
- Cognitive Dysfunction (memory problems, difficulties with concentration, attention problems, etc.)
Hypersomnia: Possible Causes
The exact causes of hypersomnia are largely unknown. However, there are several potential causes, including:
- A Family History of Hypersomnia
- Not Getting Enough Sleep at Night
- Alcohol or Drug Abuse
- Sleep Disorders (i.e. sleep apnea and narcolepsy)
- Prescription Medications (i.e. antihistamines, tranquilizers, etc.)
- A Neurological Disease or Head Injury
Hypersomnia: Who Is At Risk?
People with certain health conditions, such as heart problems, low thyroid function, sleep apnea, and depression that make them tired during the day are most at risk for hypersomnia. Furthermore, the American Sleep Association states that hypersomnia is more common among men than women. People who drink or smoke regularly are also at risk of developing hypersomnia.
Tips to Avoid Hypersomnia
To avoid hypersomnia and other sleep difficulties, observe proper sleep hygiene. Essentially, sleep hygiene refers to a set of good practices recommended for all people to avoid sleep issues. While it is not exactly treatment for hypersomnia, observing proper sleep hygiene can still prove helpful.
Get enough nighttime sleep.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but many people actually do not get enough nighttime sleep. Many people stay up late or wake up early to do other things. Generally, you should block out 7 to 9 hours for sleep every night.
- Establish a consistent sleep schedule.
This means that you have to go to sleep and get up at the same time every day, even on weekends.
- Exercise regularly.
Exercising regularly offers numerous benefits for sleep. Numerous studies state that exercise generally makes it easier to fall asleep and sleep more deeply.
- Visit a sleep clinic in Brooklyn, New York.
Daytime sleepiness may be caused by certain sleep disorders. If you are constantly and excessively sleepy during the day even when you sleep well, or if you suddenly just fall asleep, you may have a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea or narcolepsy. Undiagnosed and untreated sleep disorders are major contributors to sleepiness and daytime fatigue.
The Bottom Line
If you suspect that you have hypersomnia, talk to a sleep specialist today. Excessive daytime sleepiness is becoming a common finding in our society today and has numerous causes and treatment options.