Sleep & Parasomnias
In today’s fast paced world many people don’t get enough sleep. Between work, homework, or plans with friends and family, it can be difficult to get to bed on time. Many people think that feeling tired is simply inconvenient, but there are actually many physical benefits of sleep that could be compromised if you regularly go to bed too late.
When you sleep, your body is able to recharge – your brain, organs, and mood all benefit from getting adequate sleep. For example, did you know that when you sleep your brain consolidates memories? Although we all occasionally (or for some of us, frequently!) feel sleepy, some people have more severe problems that warrant a sleeping disorder. Here are a few sleeping disorders you may have heard of:
Narcolepsy: Characterized by periods of extreme day time sleepiness or sudden sleeping episodes during day to day activities.
Insomnia: Characterized by periods of extreme difficulty falling sleeping, inability to sleep, or poor-quality sleep.
Restless Legs Syndrome: Characterized by a strong urge to move legs that is often accompanied by a variety of unpleasant feelings (for example, itching or tingling).
Sleep apnea: Characterized by short pauses or shallow breaths while sleeping that can greatly diminish sleeping quality.
Irregular sleep patterns such as over or under sleeping may be a sign of other psychological problems (for example, depression). If you have any concerns about your sleeping patterns, please search our database of psychologists to contact support!
Please consider these resources to learn more:
- FindaPsychologist.org: Self-Help Resources
- National Institute of Health: Guide to healthy sleep
- National Sleep Foundation: How do you know if you have insomnia?
- Medline: Aging changes in sleep
- Center for Disease Control and prevention: Are you getting enough sleep?