Sleep is essential for animals to function properly. Humans, in particular, need at least six hours of sleep to keep up with the average life, while many people need between eight and 10 hours each night. There are some people who are “too busy” to get enough sleep while others suffer from sleep disorders. Sleep disorders are quite common in the United States with 40 million people suffering from a chronic disorder and an additional 20 million who have occasional sleep disorder problems. Since the effects of losing sleep (or in some cases getting too much sleep) can be detrimental, these sleep statistics can be alarming.
Common Sleep Disorders
More than 70 sleep disorders exist and are categorized into three groups: lack of sleep, disturbed sleep, and excessive sleep.
Lack of Sleep
A common lack of sleep disorder is insomnia. Further, insomnia is the most common sleep disorder in the United States.
Obstructive sleep apnea is a disorder that causes the body to repeatedly stop and start breathing during sleep. The United States treats more than 200,000 cases of sleep apnea per year. Other conditions can cause disturbed sleep, too. People with asthma, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, or women going through menopause may not sleep well.
Many experts are encouraging people to get more sleep to lead a healthier life, but remember that there is such a thing as too much sleep. People with narcolepsy are overwhelmingly fatigued during the day and may find themselves dozing off when the body needs to be awake and functioning.
Factual information including the sleep statistics in this blog can be credited to Health Communities.