What Causes Narcolepsy? These Factors May Play A Role

Other people with this condition have more control over their naps and can choose when and where they will sleep, such as during lunch breaks. Other sleep disorders have symptoms similar to those in NT2, which can make diagnosis difficult. For this reason, it is necessary for the doctor to exclude other conditions by carefully analyzing the patient’s test results and symptoms.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a drug called modafinil for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness. Two classes of antidepressants, tricyclic antidepressants and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, have been shown to be effective in controlling cataplexy in many patients. Many people with narcolepsy take short, regularly scheduled naps at times when they tend to feel sleepier. Improving nighttime sleep quality can combat excessive daytime sleepiness and help relieve persistent feelings of fatigue. Polysomnography involves the continuous recording of sleep brain waves and a number of nerve and muscle functions during nighttime sleep.

Narcolepsy is a disease of the central nervous system that causes excessive and uncontrollable daytime sleepiness. It is due to the deficiency of a protein called hypocretin (hi-poe-kree-tin), which is important for controlling the timing, expression and onset of normal sleep. When hypocretin is deficient, rapid eye movement components of sleep will suddenly occur during waking hours. Your doctor will ask about your medical history and perform a physical examination.

In most cases, the first symptom of narcolepsy that appears is excessive and overwhelming daytime sleepiness. The other symptoms may begin alone or in combination months or years after the onset of daytime naps. There are large Modafinil online variations in the development, severity and sequence of occurrence of cataplexy, sleep paralysis and hypnagogic hallucinations in individuals. Only about 20 to 25 percent of people with narcolepsy experience all four symptoms.

In narcolepsy, this paralysis mixes with vigilance, causing the sudden muscle weakness and vivid hallucinations to be experienced by people with narcolepsy. The main symptom of narcolepsy is excessive daytime sleepiness, but it can also involve cataplexy, hypnagogic hallucinations and sleep paralysis. During normal wakefulness, hypocretin neurons send signals that produce a sustained increase in the activity of many other neurons that are essential for maintaining alertness and wakefulness. These neurons include those that produce important neurotransmitters, such as norepinephrine, serotonin and dopamine. In narcolepsy, loss of hypocretins may result in reduced or inconsistent activity on these target neurons. As a result, people with narcolepsy can sometimes be fully alert, but have great difficulty maintaining this state of alertness for a long time.

Other side effects may include digestive problems, restlessness, headaches and insomnia. Close monitoring by a doctor is necessary for those taking antidepressants and is also required if such therapy is withdrawn. Some people with narcolepsy may experience hallucinations that may occur at the beginning or end of a sleep period. Examples of hallucinations can include hearing a phone ringing or a person walking nearby, seeing people or animals not being there, or having an out-of-body experience.

Episodes can be caused by sudden emotional reactions such as laughter, anger, surprise or fear. Usually, speech is slurred and vision is impaired, but hearing and consciousness remain normal. Cataplexy also has a serious emotional impact on narcoleptics, as it can cause extreme anxiety, anxiety, and avoidance of people or situations that can lead to an attack. Cataplexy is generally considered exclusive to narcolepsy and is analogous to sleep paralysis in that the usually protective paralysis mechanism that occurs during sleep is incorrectly activated. The opposite of this situation occurs with a rapid eye movement behavior disorder. Narcolepsy is characterized by the classic tetrad of excessive daytime sleepiness, cataplexy, hypnagogic hallucinations and sleep paralysis.

In a normal sleep cycle, a person enters rapid eye movement sleep after about 60 to 90 minutes. Dreams occur during REM sleep, and the brain keeps muscles loose during this stage of sleep, preventing people from carrying out their dreams. People with narcolepsy often fall into REM sleep quickly, within 15 minutes of falling asleep.

Episodes of cataplexy can occur as short periods of partial muscle weakness and can vary in duration and severity. Affected individuals may experience very short and mild episodes that can cause the knees to bend, jaws protrude, the eyelids droop, or the head to droop. Occasionally, in severe cases, there may be an almost complete loss of muscle control that lasts several minutes.