Sleep Disorders: Causes, Prevalence, Treatment

Sleep is an important part of our lives. The kind of sleep we have determines how healthy our bodies are, and to what extent our body organs can function normally. Despite this, research has shown that a large proportion of the American population suffers from serious sleep disorders, which have affected their health adversely.

A great number of accidents, automobile and industrial, are a direct result of sleep disorders that have gone undiagnosed in people. Social relationships, performance in the workplace, and even performance in school can be adversely affected by sleep problems.

Some of the sleep disorders include sleep apnea, in which the victim is unable to breathe well while asleep, other people may just experience insomnia, lack of sleep, while others may experience a condition known as narcolepsy, in which the victim experiences a sleepy feeling during inappropriate hours like the day (Synder 1). This is a result of insufficient sleep. This paper is an in-depth analysis of the causes, prevalence, and treatment of sleep disorders.


The chief cause of sleep disorders is stress. This is caused by psychological factors like phobias, compulsions etcetera. Another main cause of sleep disorders is bad eating habits. To enjoy sleep, a person has to take the right amount of food. Some people may lack sleep due to overeating while others may lack sleep as a result of hunger.

The latter is usually common in women striving to attain a good shape by dieting. It is also of essence that certain things are avoided as one goes to bed. These include coffee with caffeine, cola, alcohol, and even tea. This is because these drinks may have insomniac effects on people who take them. Alcohol may accelerate sleep, but the sleep will be interrupted by sobriety late at night. It is also of essence that people avoid smoking before going to bed since this may hurt sleep (Synder 1).


As evidenced in the discussion above, sleep disorders are more likely to be seen in people with psychological problems since stress is the leading cause of sleep disorders. Sleep disorders are also more prevalent in overweight people than people with average bodies. This is because overweight people normally have diet problems.

Sleep problems may also be more prevalent in women watching their weight since they may be disturbed by hunger pangs as they sleep. Sleep problems have also been observed to be prevalent in alcoholics and smokers. The former normally experience narcolepsy due to sleep interruptions at night. Sleep problems are also prevalent in young adults and adults than children and old people. This is because adults are known to have more stress than children and the elderly.


There are several ways in which sleep problems can be combated. One such way is the common practice of taking milk before going to sleep. This is recommended for people whose sleep disorders are not serious. It is also important for people with sleep disorders to have regular and sufficient sleep.

Sleeping pills have also been used as a remedy for sleep disorders, although their usefulness has attracted substantial controversy. The use of drugs to combat sleeping disorders has specifically helped treat severe sleepwalking disorders. The medication is prescribed to prevent the victim from being injured in sleep as he/she takes to the staircases, the balcony, or even the kitchen (Kryger 59).

Works Cited

Kryger, Meir. A Woman’s Guide to Sleep Disorders. United States. McGraw Hill, 2004. Print.

Synder, Gerald. “Sleep Disorders”. 2010 – 2011. Web.

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