Brain and Spine Surgery



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Overview

 

A sleep disorder is a condition that involves any type of difficulty that relates to sleeping. This includes difficulties falling or staying asleep, falling asleep at inappropriate times, excessive total sleep time, or Abnormal Behaviors Associated With Sleep.

There Are Two Distinct Phases Of Sleep : -
  • Non-rapid eye movement (Non REM) sleep : - The quiet or restful phase of sleep, also referred to as "slow wave sleep"; it is divided into four stages of progressively deepening sleep
  • Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep : - The phase of sleep in which the brain is active and dreaming occurs; it is also known as "dream sleep"

The three major sleep disorders are dyssomnias (insomnia), hypersomnia (disorders of excessive sleepiness) and parasomnias (abnormal behaviors during sleep).

Insomnia is a Sleep Apnea that is characterized by inadequate sleep quality and quantity. Symptoms of insomnia are trouble falling asleep or staying asleep; waking up too early in the morning; and inadequate sleep.

There Are Three Types Of Insomnia : -
  • Transient, or mild, insomnia : - sleep difficulties that last for a few days; there is little or no evidence of impairment of functioning during the day. It is usually brought on by stress, anxiety or excitement. Examples of this include, sleeping poorly before an important occasion, such as a business meeting, or after a disagreement with a friend or family member
  • Short-term, or moderate, insomnia : - sleep difficulties that last for less than a month, that mildly affect functioning during the day, together with feelings of irritability and fatigue
  • Chronic, or severe, insomnia : - sleep difficulties that last for more than a month, that severely impair functioning during the day, and cause strong feelings of restlessness, irritability, anxiety, and fatigue

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Causes of Insomnia

There Is Usually No Single Cause Of Insomnia, But There Are A Number Of Factors Known To Contribute, Including : -
  • Stress (for example, job loss or change, death of a loved one, divorce, or moving)
  • Physical health problems such as asthma or pain
  • Medicines like those taken for asthma, vertigo and depression
  • Environmental factors such as noise, an uncomfortable bed or being too hot or cold
  • Lifestyle habits, e.g. eating late at night, drinking alcohol or using stimulants such as nicotine
  • A lack of sleep may also increase the risk of certain health conditions including high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes.
  • Interference in normal sleep schedule (for example, jet lag or switching from a day to night shift)


Treatment Of Insomnia

Sedative antihistamines such as diphenhydramine (Nytol) and promethazine (Phenergan) can help treat insomnia. These are effective but stay in the body for a long time and can cause a hangover effect in the morning.

Relaxation Therapy: - There are specific and effective techniques that can reduce or eliminate anxiety and body tension. As a result, the person's mind is able to stop "racing," the muscles can relax, and restful sleep can occur. It usually takes much practice to learn these techniques and to achieve effective relaxation.

Stimulus control, which trains people to use their bed and bedroom for sleep and sex only. Persons with insomnia are encouraged to go another room and engage in a relaxing activity until they are sleepy and ready to return to bed. Go to bed only when sleepy, establish a standard wake-up time, get out of bed whenever awake for more than 15-20 minutes, avoid reading, watching TV, eating, worrying and other sleep-incompatible behaviors in the bed and bedroom, refrain from daytime napping.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) involves confronting, and changing, your beliefs, assumptions, and behaviors regarding sleep, all of which may be preventing you from getting the sleep you need. Cognitive-behavioral therapy can reduce your misconceptions about sleep, as well as teach you positive sleep behaviors. It is often used in conjunction with stimulus control, sleep restriction, and good sleep hygiene.




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