You may have heard of narcolepsy—a sleep disorder that involves sudden “sleep attacks.” Cataplexy is one of the symptoms of narcolepsy. It doesn’t affect everyone with this sleep disorder, but when it does occur, it can be frightening and highly disruptive. 

Watch this video to hear Julie’s story. She’s a narcolepsy awareness advocate with personal experience with cataplexy. She explains that cataplexy involves the sudden, uncontrollable loss of muscle function. It’s triggered by emotions, like anger or laughter. At first, Julie’s knees would give out when she laughed. Gradually, her symptoms progressed until she became completely paralyzed during an episode. 

Sleep Dynamics provides compassionate care for individuals with narcolepsy in New Jersey. You can call us at (848) 217-0240 to schedule a consult. 

It’s essential to get your sleep apnea symptoms under control. Treating this serious disorder will improve your quality of life and reduce your risk of long-term health problems. There are two main options for sleep apnea sufferers. Your doctor might recommend a custom-fitted oral appliance if your symptoms are mild. You’ll wear it every night while you are asleep. It will reposition your jaw slightly to keep your airway open. 

If your symptoms are more severe, then you’re a good candidate for CPAP therapy. Continuous positive airway pressure is provided by a special CPAP machine, which connects via a tube to a facial mask. You’ll wear the mask each night. It’s common to experience some challenges while you adjust to using CPAP therapy. Work with your sleep medicine specialist to develop effective solutions to these challenges. 

Sleep Dynamics is comprised of a team of sleep medicine experts serving Central New Jersey who specialize in diagnosing and treating sleep apnea and insomnia. Call us at (848) 217-0240, and we’ll recommend the most appropriate treatment plan for your lifestyle.

The human body is capable of all sorts of amazing things—from predicting inclement weather with achy joints to predicting an early spring with itchy eyes. Some of the incredible things the body does happen while you sleep. The following bodily changes highlight the importance of diagnosing and treating sleep disorders to give yourself the restful sleep you need

You can grow taller.

You might have heard that astronauts gain some height while they’re in space. This change is temporary, but it’s measurable. It happens because the microgravity releases pressure on the body, allowing the spaces in the spine to expand. A similar thing happens when you sleep. Since you sleep lying down, your spine isn’t subjected to the pressures of your body weight. It allows the spinal discs to rehydrate and expand slightly, which in turn gives you a slight height increase.

Your cardiovascular system takes a break.

Each night, your blood pressure and heart rate decline. It’s like a working vacation for your cardiovascular system. This mini-break is necessary to allow the heart muscle and blood vessels to repair themselves. This is one reason why people with sleep disorders like sleep apnea are at a higher risk of heart disease. Not getting enough sleep cheats the cardiovascular system of the nightly vacation it needs to maintain health. 

Your skin’s collagen stores get replenished.

There’s a reason why dermatologists can tell if their patients aren’t getting enough sleep. Since you don’t eat while you sleep, your body enters a temporary fasting state. This triggers the release of growth hormones for the purpose of releasing energy from fat cells. As a side effect, the growth hormones also trigger collagen production. Collagen is one of the proteins responsible for keeping your skin elastic and resilient. 

Here at Sleep Dynamics, it’s our mission to help our patients throughout New Jersey overcome sleep disorders. Our sleep medicine specialists genuinely care about your health and quality of life. If you’ve been referred for a multiple sleep latency test, you can get in touch with our friendly office staff at (848) 217-0240.

People often assume that sleep disorders are always easily diagnosed. After all, you’ll know it if you lie awake all night or nod off at your desk during the day. But surprisingly, many doctors misdiagnose sleep disorders because they can mimic the symptoms of other medical problems, such as chronic fatigue syndrome. That’s why patients diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome might want to undergo a maintenance of wakefulness test. 

Medical Definitions

Narcolepsy is a neurological disorder that affects the brain’s ability to regulate the sleep/wake cycles. When left undiagnosed and untreated, narcolepsy can substantially disrupt a person’s daily routines. It can inhibit normal social, emotional, and cognitive function. Chronic fatigue syndrome causes a person to suffer from extreme fatigue, despite an apparent lack of an underlying medical cause. This fatigue is not relieved by rest. The specific causes of both narcolepsy and chronic fatigue syndrome remain puzzling for researchers. 

Common Signs and Symptoms

The primary reason why narcolepsy and chronic fatigue syndrome are often mixed up is because they can have the same symptoms. The symptoms they share in common are: 

Different Signs and Symptoms

There are some symptoms that differ, however. People with narcolepsy may experience cataplexy, which is the abrupt loss of muscle tone. This can cause problems as minor as temporarily slurred speech to as major as a complete collapse to the ground. Some individuals with narcolepsy might also experience hallucinations as they fall asleep or awaken. People with chronic fatigue syndrome can experience other symptoms, as well, including the following:

Unmanaged chronic fatigue syndrome and narcolepsy can lead to depression, work absenteeism, and social isolation. 

When you become a patient at Sleep Dynamics, you’ll work closely with a specialist to get to the bottom of your symptoms, and develop an effective treatment plan. We’re a trusted source of medical guidance for patients with narcolepsy in Central New Jersey. Call us today at (848) 217-0240.

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