Sleep disorders

Information, Symptoms, Treatments and Resources

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Bizarre Sleep Disorders

Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy

Nearly nodding off in a boring meeting after a night of too little sleep is one thing. Finding yourself constantly falling asleep while at work, running errands or even driving is something else entirely.

Narcolepsy is a disorder defined by frequent “sleep attacks” during the day — and can even occur when you’re in the middle of a conversation. Symptoms of narcolepsy include cataplexy (sudden loss of muscle tone), sleep paralysis and hallucinations upon waking.

Narcolepsy commonly begins between the ages of 10 and 25, and often worsens progressively. There’s no cure for the disorder, but it can be effectively treated with stimulants, antidepressants and other drugs.

By Erin Golden. Published October 29, 2013. Erin Golden is a writer based in Nebraska. She is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.