Adolescent Sleep Disorder Specialist in Kenilworth, IL
Many people are aware that they are not getting the recommended amount of sleep that they need every night. According to the National Sleep Foundation, it is ideal for individuals to receive between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night and the average teenager should receive between 8 and 10 hours.
Lack of sleep can have many negative repercussions in your child’s life, including several that can impair their general health. It is important to receive adequate amounts of sleep by making sure your child heads to bed a bit earlier each night, but it is also possible for the quality of their sleep to be ruined by a number of potentially unknown sleep disorders that prevent them from achieving the quality of sleep that they need.
Types of Sleep Disorders
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Like snoring, obstructive sleep apnea is the result of a blockage that inhibits airflow through the nose or mouth. This condition is especially concerning, as it causes pauses in breathing throughout the night as airflow is stopped completely until the brain wakes the body enough to resume its breathing functions. This momentary pauses typically result in chronic fatigue as well as serious conditions of the heart and vascular system.
Individuals who experience extreme difficulty in falling asleep, or in staying asleep, are likely to have a sleep disorder called insomnia. This condition can be both acute and chronic, meaning it can last for a short period of time (usually due to overwhelming amounts of stress) or it can last for months if not years at a time.
It is possible for a person to wake in the middle of a sleep cycle and be unable to move their body despite having a fully active mind and conscious awareness. This occurrence is known as sleep paralysis, which is generally quite alarming and terrifying for the individual to experience. Controlled breathing and other relaxation techniques are often great sources of relief to this sleep disorder, though some cases may also require prescribed medications to help reduce frequency of sleep paralysis episodes.
Narcolepsy is a sleeping disorder characterized by extreme fatigue that often causes the person to suddenly fall asleep, even in inappropriate places or at abnormal times. In addition to daytime sleepiness, people with narcolepsy often experience sleep paralysis, hypnagogic hallucinations, and cataplexy.
Circadian Rhythm Disorders
Many individuals will encounter a circadian rhythm disorder at some point in their lives when their body is unable to sync with external time cues. This typically occurs after a significant time zone change, and is also extremely common in those suffering from blindness.
Restless Leg Syndrome
As mentioned, there are a variety of sleep disorders that can be caused by other conditions. Restless leg syndrome is one such condition that results in sensations through the legs that often make it difficult to achieve a restful sleep. These sensations are reported to feel similar to that of aching, tingling, burning, or even crawling on the skin. Restless leg syndrome belongs to a category of sleep disorders called parasomnias, which also include nightmares, sleepwalking, and night terrors.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
For those that achieve their recommended hours of sleep and still feel an extreme sense of tiredness, it is likely that their exhaustion is being caused by chronic fatigue syndrome ( CFS). This particular sleep disorder can be caused by other medical conditions, such as sleep apnea, but may also exist all on its own.
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If your child is having sleeping difficulties, contact a therapist at AFG Guidance Center today to discuss treatment options. Click