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What is Hypersonmia?

Hypersomnia is a condition characterized by excessive sleepiness. It is an excessively deep or prolonged major sleep period. Hypersomnia may be associated with difficulty in awakening.  A person with hypersomnia might nap repeatedly during the day, often at inappropriate times such as at work, during a meal, or in conversation.

What Causes Hypersomnia?

The exact cause of hypersomnia is unknown. Researchers believe that hypersomnia might be caused by another sleep disorder, dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system, tumor, head trauma, a side effect of medication, or drug or alcohol abuse.

What are the Symptoms of Hypersomnia?

The most common symptoms of hypersomnia are:
  • long periods of sleep
  • excessive sleepiness
  • excessive deep sleep
  • anxiety
  • decreased energy
  • loss of appetite
  • memory difficulty
  • hallucinations

How is Hypersomnia Diagnosed?

If you believe you have hypersomnia, contact your doctor. Your doctor will refer you to sleep specialist. The sleep specialist will order a sleep study. During a sleep study, you stay overnight while Technologists monitor your muscle movement, heartbeat, eye movement, leg movements and respiration. The specialist may also want to do a Multiple Sleep Latency Test. A Multiple Sleep Latency Test tests how sleepy you are.

Can Hypersomnia be Treated?

Yes, hypersomnia can be treated. Treatment consists of behavioral changes, good sleep hygiene and taking stimulants to help you be more alert.

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