At least 40 million Americans each year suffer from chronic, long-term sleep disorders, and an additional 20 million experience sleeping problems. Our center's programs are designed to help you start sleeping again.
Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) in which a person experiences extreme fatigue and possibly falls asleep at inappropriate times, such as while at work or at school. Narcoleptics usually experience disturbed nocturnal sleep and an abnormal daytime sleep pattern.
In addition, some narcoleptics experience cataplexy, a sudden muscular weakness brought on by strong emotions. It often manifests as muscular weaknesses ranging from a barely perceptible slackening of the facial muscles to the dropping of the jaw or head, weakness at the knees, or a total collapse. Usually speech is slurred, vision is impaired (double vision, inability to focus), but hearing and awareness remain normal. In some rare cases, an individual's body becomes paralyzed and muscles become stiff.
Narcolepsy effects about one out of every 2,000 people and seems to be genetic. Individuals who may have narcolepsy should see a board certified sleep physician or a neurologist experienced in sleep medicine.