Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy is a rare disorder that causes people to suddenly fall asleep with little warning. This is because sufferers’ brains are unable to regulate sleeping and waking patterns in a normal fashion.

There are a number of symptoms of narcolepsy, although not everyone will experience the same ones. In addition, some sufferers experience regular symptoms, whilst others are less frequently affected. Symptoms include:

Excessive daytime sleepiness – This is usually the first sign of narcolepsy but is often just misjudged as people being lazy.

Insomnia

Insomnia is a very common problem, affecting around one in three people in the UK. Insomnia is difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep for long enough to feel refreshed the next morning. Whilst occasional episodes of insomnia may come and go without problems, the issue can persist in some people for months or even years. And persistent insomnia can have a serious impact on quality of life.

Restless leg syndrome

Restless leg syndrome, sometimes known as Willis-Ekbom disease, is a relatively common condition of the nervous system, which causes an overwhelming, irresistible urge to move the legs. The urge is usually strongest in the evening or at night and can also cause a creeping sensation in the feet, calves and thighs.

Snoring

Snoring is an incredibly common condition, where a person makes a snorting or rattling noise when they breathe during sleep. It’s caused by the soft palate and tissue in the mouth, nose or throat vibrating. Did you know that the exact sound made by a snorer depends on the type of soft tissue that’s vibrating? If it’s the soft tissue at the back of the nose vibrating, the snorer will produce a quiet, pinched nasal sound. But if the tissues at the top of the mouth (soft palate) and back of the throat (uvula) vibrate, a louder, more guttural sound will be produced.

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea, sometimes known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), is a fairly common condition where the walls of the throat narrow during sleep and cause an interruption of normal breathing. There are two characteristic types of breathing interruption with sleep apnea. The first is apnea, where the muscles and soft tissues in the throat relax and collapse sufficiently to cause a total blockage of the airway. It is characterised as an apnea when the airflow is blocked for 10 seconds or more.