A sleep disorder (somnipathy) is any disruption in the sleep patterns of an individual

While some sleep disorders may leave you feeling unrefreshed, a number of symptoms are more severe including excessive sleepiness, snoring, difficulty falling asleep during normal sleeping hours and abnormal behaviors such as restless leg syndrome. There are even disorders that cause you to get too much sleep.

Particular behaviors during normal daytime activities are telltale signs of sleep deprivation. If you are experiencing one or more of the following symptoms during the day, you may not be getting enough restful sleep at night, and you may even have a sleep disorder.

If you suspect that you are not getting enough sleep or that you might have a sleep disorder, speak to your physician or a sleep specialist. If your health care professional feels that you may have a sleep disorder they may ask that you keep a sleep diary, or they may even have you stay overnight at a sleep center for observation.

There are over 100 different types of sleep disorders.

Dyssomnias result in excessive daytime sleepiness or an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep. Dyssomnias can originate from causes inside or outside the body.

• Insomnia
• Narcolepsy
• Inability to stay awake (hypersomnia)
• Sleep apnea
• Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)
• Periodic Limb Movement in Sleep (PLMS)
• Circadian rhythm sleep disorder

Disorders of partial arousal from sleep, or disorders that interfere with sleep stage transitions. Behaviors not normally associated with sleeping may occur during sleep.

• Sleepwalking
• Sleep talking
• Nightmares
• Sleep terrors / night terrors
• Nocturnal leg cramps
• Sleep paralysis
• Grinding or clenching of the teeth (bruxism)
• Bedwetting
• Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

Sleep deprivation is highly treatable, and most individuals find that they experience relief from employing one or sometimes a combination of treatments. Mild to moderate sleep apnea can often be treated with behavioral modification, but most cases of sleep deprivation require a physician’s assistance to find the most effective treatment.

If sleep time isn’t a good time for you, talk to your doctor or healthcare professional about your options. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) makes sure that people with sleep problems get the best medical care.

Sleep medicine is a recognized medical subspecialty. Doctors who specialize in sleep medicine help people who are unable to sleep well. Sleep doctors are able to detect and treat both common and rare sleep disorders. Some common sleep disorders are insomnia, jet lag, sleepwalking, snoring and obstructive sleep apnea.
The AASM accredits centers and labs that treat people who have sleep problems. In 1977 the AASM accredited the first sleep disorders center. The AASM also certifies behavioral sleep medicine (BSM) specialists. These doctors help people improve their sleep by changing how they think and behave.