The Chemistry of Caffeine, Nicotine, and Sleep

Caffeine and nicotine side effects can include insomnia. Cutting back on coffee and smoking will ultimately help, but be prepared for withdrawal symptoms that may temporarily affect sleep.

As we pack more and more into our busy schedules, something’s gotta give. More often than not, that something is sleep.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 50 to 70 million Americans are chronically sleep-deprived. The reasons are just what you would expect — too many responsibilities at work, ...

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Resetting Your Internal Clock for Better Sleep

Most of us are born tending to be larks or night owls. However, adhering to a strict sleep schedule and seeking professional help when necessary can help adjust your sleeping times if work or other factors dictate a change.

We’d like to think we control our bodies, choosing when to go to sleep and when to wake up. However, research shows we’ve got it wrong.

For example, it’s more than personal preference if you’re a night owl who’s awake in the ...

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New Animal Study Might Explain Jet Lag Differences

Traveling west to east? Blame your brain for the added disruption.

The way the human circadian clock sets itself may explain why jet lag tends to affect people more severely when they’re flying west to east compared to the other direction, a new animal study indicates.

The circadian clock, which regulates many body processes, has to make regular adjustments to stay synchronized with the light-dark cycle of where a person is and does this by delaying or advancing its time in response ...

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What Is Sexsomnia?

If you have ever acted out sexually while sleeping, you’re not alone. Here is a closer look into the rare and largely unknown sleep disorder know as sexsomnia.

Most people are familiar with sleepwalking, in which a person in deep sleep will get up and begin walking around the house. Another condition that occurs during the same phase of the sleep cycle is sexsomnia, in which the sleeping individual acts out sexually. Unlike sleepwalking, sexsomnia is largely unknown and misunderstood.

The ...

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15 Scary Sleep Disorders

Sleep disorders are always a problem, but some can be downright scary. Learn about 10 of the most serious sleep issues and how you and your doctor can put a stop to the symptoms.

We all remember waking up from nightmares as children. But for some people, that fright can manifest itself in real life in the form of a scary sleep disorder.

Some of these sleep disorders are frightening for the risk that they pose to you and your loved ...

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10 Tips for a Spouse With Sleep Disorders

Tired of tossing and turning because your partner has a sleep disorder? Here are 10 ways to rest easy – and save your relationship.

A snoring spouse doesn’t mean you have to spend your nights sleeping on the couch. Here is a list of 10 steps you can take to get a good night’s sleep:

Sleep should be a restful time for couples, a time to unwind and rejuvenate for the next day’s activities. By dealing with problem sleep, you ...

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When Your Spouse Has a Sleep Disorder

A partner with a snoring problem or a sleep disorder can put a strain on your relationship. Find out how sleep apnea and other sleep disorders affect couples — and what you can do to get some rest.

Does your partner’s snoring keep you up at night? Does he or she have sleep apnea or another sleep disorder? If you answered “yes” to either of those questions, then chances are you’re probably not sleeping too well, either.

“A spouse’s sleep disorder ...

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Diagnosing and Treating Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy can be a scary sleep disorder – but it is treatable. Discover the most common treatment methods.

There are a number of health conditions apart from narcopelsy that can cause excessive daytime sleepiness, including sleep apnea. To determine the exact cause of your symptoms, a complete health exam and a number of tests may be performed.

If a patient goes to the doctor and describes having a cataplectic attack, no further testing is usually needed, says David Schulman, MD, MPH, ...

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Getting Help for Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy symptoms include excessive sleepiness and random muscle paralysis. Fortunately, this challenging sleep disorder can be controlled with medication, enabling patients to live productive lives.

Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder caused by the brain’s inability to regulate a normal sleep-wake cycle. If you have narcolepsy, you may fall asleep quickly at inappropriate times of the day and wake up during the night when you want to sleep.

“People with narcolepsy are constantly slipping between being awake and REM [dream] sleep,” ...

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Nightmares and Sleep Terrors: Should You Be Concerned?

While common in kids age 6 and under, nightmares and sleep terrors can signal a more serious condition. Discover the warning signs.

Nightmares and night terrors can occur in both adults and children, although children are more often affected. A number of factors can cause such sleep disorders, including:

“Nathan’s night terrors occur when he is overtired or has had a really busy day or busy weekend,” says Thorson. In addition, night terrors tend to run in families, so there probably ...

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