Besides insomnia, there are number of sleep disorders. Here are some of the most common ones described shortly. You can find more information under useful links.
Advanced sleep phase disorder (ASPD): Is a condition in which patients feel very sleepy and go to bed early in the evening (e.g. 6:00–8:00 p.m.) and wake up very early in the morning (e.g. around 3:00 a.m.).
Allergies: Allergic rhinitis occurs when allergens in the air are breathed by a patient that is allergic to them, irritating and inflaming the nasal passages. Allergens may include dust mites, pollen, molds, or pet dandruff. In people who are allergic to them, these particles trigger the release of a chemical in the body that causes nasal congestion, sneezing, watery eyes, and runny nose.
Bedwetting: Most children wet the bed occasionally or even nightly during the potty-training years. Controlling bladder function during sleep is usually the last stage of potty-training. Around 30% of 4-year-olds still wet their beds and 10% of 6-year-olds have occasional bedwetting. If a 6-year-old or older wets the bed at night, it’s recommended to see a doctor. An initial treatment is an alarm that reveals bedwetting which helps a child to react to bedwetting.
Bruxism: Involuntarily grinding or clenching of the teeth while sleeping. Nearly 85-90 of people grind their teeth at some point of their lives. With 5% of the population it becomes a harm. Bruxism is typical among anxious and stressed people. Dentists can help by prescribing grinding braces.
Delayed sleep phase syndrome (DSPS): Inability to awaken and fall asleep at socially acceptable times but no problem with sleep maintenance, a disorder of circadian rhythms.
Difficulty in breathing: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a term used for lung disorders such as emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and in some cases chronic asthma. People with COPD may have difficulty breathing, chronic cough, fatigue, and chest tightening. COPD can also result in reduced blood oxygen levels, causing fatigue and leading to adverse health conditions.
Fatique and excessive sleepiness: Do you find it difficult to get out of bed in the morning? Do you sometimes feel sleepy while watching television or driving? If so, you may be one of the millions of Americans who suffer from excessive sleepiness, a condition that can significantly reduce quality of life, decrease productivity and interfere with relationships.
Epilepsy: Epilepsy is a neurological disorder involving recurrent seizures. A seizure, also called convulsion, is a sudden change in behaviour caused by increased electrical activity in the brain. The increase in electrical activity may result in unconsciousness and violent body shakes or simply a staring spell that may go unnoticed.
Extreme sleepiness: Each of us has a specific sleep requirement. Some people need nine hours every night in order to feel their best while others feel great with just seven. But imagine getting ten or more hours of sleep at night plus a couple of hour-long naps during the day and still feeling sleepy.
Frequent urination at night (nocturia): A frequent need to get up and go to the bathroom to urinate at night is called nocturia. It differs from enuresis, or bed-wetting, in which the person does not arouse from sleep, but the bladder empties anyway. Nocturia is a common cause of sleep loss, especially among older adults. Nocturia could result simply from too much liquid intake before going to bed (usually the case in the young), or it could be a symptom of a larger problem (such as sleep apnea, bladder infection, diabetes). Nocturia can also be a sign of stress, too little rest daytime or an allergy.
Hypopnea syndrome: Abnormally shallow breathing or slow respiratory rate while sleeping.
Irregular sleep–wake rhythm: Characterized by numerous naps throughout the 24-hour period, no main nighttime sleep episode and irregularity from day to day. Sufferers have no pattern of when they are awake or asleep, may have poor quality sleep, and often may be very sleepy while they are awake.
Narcolepsy: Narcolepsy is a neurological disorder caused by the brain’s inability to regulate sleep-wake cycles normally. The main features of narcolepsy are excessive daytime sleepiness and cataplexy. The disease is also often associated with sudden sleep attacks, insomnia, dream-like hallucinations, and a condition called sleep paralysis.
Parasomnias: Disruptive sleep-related events involving inappropriate actions during sleep; sleep walking and night-terrors are examples.
Periodic limp movements in sleep (PMLD): Periodic limb movements in sleep are repetitive movements, most typically in the lower limbs, that occur about every 20-40 seconds. If you have PLMS, or sleep with someone who has PLMS (also referred to as PLMD, periodic limb movement disorder), you may recognize these movements as brief muscle twitches, jerking movements or an upward flexing of the feet.
REM behavior disorder (RBD): People who suffer from REM behavior disorder (RBD) act out their dreams. They physically move limbs or even get up and engage in activities associated with waking. Some talk, shout, scream, hit, punch, or fly out of bed while sleeping.
Restless legs syndrome (RLS): Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is like a fingerprint; everyone’s experience with it is unique. Some people call RLS the “frantic muscles” or “jitters.” Some people may describe it as aching, tingling sensations deep within their legs, while others may say they feel like lightning is running through their veins.
Situational circadian rhythm sleep disorders: Shift work sleep disorder (SWSD) and jet lag. Shift and irregular work have increased in modern society but humankind’s ability to adapt hasn’t changed. Human systems comply with regular circadian rhythm where the main assumption is that we work daytime and sleep nightime.
Snoring: Is noisy breathing during sleep. It is a common problem among all ages and both genders. Snoring may occur nightly or intermittently.
Sleepwalking: Sleepwalking (somnambulism) is a behaviour disorder that originates during deep sleep and results in walking or performing other complex behaviours while asleep. It is much more common in children than adults and is more likely to occur if a person is sleep deprived. It can be partly genetic and very dangerous. Adult sleepwalkers have –nearly without exception – been sleepwalkers as child. Sleepwalking can be a sign of strain, stress and overall tiredness or fever diseases.
Sleeptalking: Sleep talking (somniloquy) is a sleep disorder defined as talking during sleep without being aware of it. Sleep talking can involve complicated dialogues or monologues, complete gibberish or mumbling. The good news is that for most people it is a rare and short-lived occurrence. Anyone can experience sleep talking, but the condition is more common in males and children.
Sleep apnea: When air is blocked from entering into the lungs, the individual unconsciously gasps for air and sleep is disturbed. Breathing pauses of at least ten seconds, 30 times within seven hours of sleep, classifies as apnea. Obstruction of the airway during sleep, causing lack of sufficient deep sleep, often accompanied by snoring. Other forms of sleep apnea are less common. To diagnose and treat sleep apnea requires several experts and specific methods (night or sleep polygraphs). If you suffer with breathing pauses, there are simple lifestyle changes, such as weight loss, alcohol moderation, quitting smoking and avoiding sleeping pills.
Sleep paralysis: Is characterized by temporary paralysis of the body shortly before or after sleep. Sleep paralysis may be accompanied by visual, auditory or tactile hallucinations. It is not a disorder unless it is severe and it is often seen as part of narcolepsy.
Sleep-terror and nightmares: Many insomniacs experience sleep disorders that involve dreaming. These include nightmares, sleep terrors, and REM sleep behaviour. Nightmares are dreams with vivid and disturbing content. They are common in children during REM sleep. They usually involve an immediate awakening and good recall of the dream content.
Somniphobia: A cause of sleep deprivation. It is a dread/fear of falling asleep or going to bed. Signs of illness include anxiety and panic attacks during attempts to sleep and before it.