According to the American Sleep Association, 50 to 70 million adults in the US have a sleep disorder.

While there are varying degrees of complexity when it comes to sleep disorders, there are only several sleep disorders that predominantly affected American adults.

In this guide, we’re going to provide a brief breakdown of the most common sleep disorders:

  • Sleep Apnea
  • Insomnia
  • Narcolepsy
  • Shift Work Disorders
  • Sleep-Related Movement Disorders

Sleep Apnea

It’s estimated that over 18 million adults have sleep apnea in the U.S.

“Sleep apnea is the most frequent sleep disorder I see from the clinic,” says Dr. Abbott. “It involves frequent events where you’re not getting enough oxygen while you sleep, leading to microarousals every few minutes.”

Sleep apnea prevents you from entering constant sleep. It a difficulty; while you are sleeping, your airway is being obstructed by something. This includes your jaw arrangement, the fat and musculature of your tongue, the muscles and fat around your airway, and anatomical features, like your back and adenoids.

Sleep apnea can be diagnosed with a simple home study kit that monitors your oxygen levels and breathing patterns or using a sleep evaluation.

Like maintaining a wholesome weight, sleep apnea can be enhanced with positional therapy to ensure that you’re sleeping with lifestyle modifications, or in a position that minimizes airway obstruction. Sleep apnea can be also improved by Cosmetic appliances. If these methods do not work, your doctor may suggest a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device, which keeps your airway open during the night using a continuous stream of air delivered through a mask.


Roughly one in four adults in the U.S. develop sleeplessness. But, at least 75 percent of people with insomnia recover.

Insomnia is. It can start with something easy, such as caffeine ingestion that is an excessive amount of or as a complication of medication. It may be related to your circadian rhythm being misaligned with the 24-hour cycle of day that is normal, or it may be linked to health and stress. The underlying cause may lead to a negative association between your bed and your sense of sleep.

“With insomnia, there is typically a habit, a precipitating factor, like anxiety or anxiety causing a lousy night’s sleep, and then perpetuating factors, where you have conditioned yourself to think negatively about your own bed because you spend more time alert in it than asleep,” states Dr. Abbott. “These people also typically can’t float well; they’re stuck at a hyper-alert state.”

Such as spending more time in bed often individuals with insomnia will embrace strategies for sleep although they presume to be useful but are detrimental.

Insomnia treatment with the most effective efficacy is cognitive behavioral therapy, which may contain strategies like sleep restriction, where you spend less time in bed generally; this may lead to more time really sleeping in bed. Incorporating other sleep hygiene plans, such as allotting appropriate period to wind down before bed and limiting display time, can also help with insomnia.


Narcolepsy is less frequent than sleep apnea and insomnia, affecting roughly one in 2,000 people. It is usually diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 10. It causes you to feel sleepy, and in some instances can cause uncontrollable sleep. When you are awake, narcolepsy can present with or without cataplexy, or abrupt loss of muscle tone.

Though the cause of narcolepsy is unknown have low levels of hypocretin in their own brains. Hypocretin is the neurotransmitter that controls sleep-wake countries and appetite cues.

Treatment for narcolepsy may involve lifestyle modifications or medications and is highly individualized.

“Some medications provide great hope for people with narcolepsy,” adds Dr. Abbott.

Shift Work Diseases

Work disorders are disturbances in sleep cycles normally caused by working a night shift, or shifts.

If you work the night shift, you can combat sleepiness by minimizing your exposure to the light of the morning by sporting blue-light-blocking glasses in your way home from work and fully inverting your sleep program.

Speak with your doctor about scheduled napping, and attempt to keep your sleep schedule consistent, even on your days off.

Sleep-Related Movement Disorders

Your legs’ flexion characterizes periodic limb movements. “It is a slow, alternate kicking movement in the legs that may be triggered by several things, including medications and stress,” says Dr. Abbott. “It affects the quality of your sleep”

Parasomnia disorders REM and include non-REM disorders like REM behavior disorder, where your body doesn’t experience loss of muscle tone during REM.

“It is important to work out the underlying cause of sleep motion disorders, which can range from medications to neurological disorders,” says Dr. Abbott. “If you’re experiencing a sleep-related motion disease, ask your primary care physician to make sure these behaviors are not associated with some non-sleep disorder.”

Additionally, it is important to take safety measures for movement disorders, such as making sure you are sleeping in a safe environment and that your sleep partner is safe.

“Great sleep means good general health,” concludes Dr. Abbott. “If anything is affecting your sleep, then speak with your physician about it.”