It is common knowledge that not having enough sleep can lead to many unwanted issues affecting your everyday life. Nonetheless, most people do not realise that sleeping disorders also go the opposite direction, making oversleeping a pain point worth looking into.
Otherwise known as hypersomnia, daytime oversleeping is something you should evaluate if you find yourself constantly on its loop. According to 2009 statistics on excessive daytime sleepiness, 20 per cent of the American population report issues with excessive daytime sleeping. Notably, it varies with different factors such as working conditions, age, drug use, and more.
This article will answer your questions concerning the larger scope of what hypersomnia is, its causes, symptoms, how to avoid excessive sleep, and when to be worried.
Let’s get into it.
When To See A Doctor About Your Sleepiness
An answer to the question, how to stop feeling sleepy? Might be to see a doctor.
A strong indication that you need a doctor’s appointment is if your focus is off. Be it oversleeping or undersleeping, you should be cautious about what is coming next once your concentration levels start faltering during driving or handling machinery.
Other things to look at in sleeping problems that might prompt visiting the doctor are memory issues, brain fogginess, productivity variations, difficulty making decisions, and more. To get a full scope of hypersomnia, keep reading to know the specific characteristics of the disorder.
Check if It’s Hypersomnia
Taking an afternoon nap is no big deal, especially if you are handling a lot in your day. However, if there is prolonged sleepiness during the day, it might be an issue with excessive daytime sleeping.
Sleep experts explain hypersomnia as excessive daytime sleeping without a feeling of restoration. Therefore, if you experience this, it is high time to seek medical advice.
Diagnosis and Treatment for Hypersomnia
You ought to know that there are several reasons why you would have hypersomnia in your life. Your doctor will indicate if you have primary or secondary hypersomnia to know the next steps.
Primary hypersomnia is sleeping excessively without any other issues you have talked about with your doctor. On the other hand, secondary hypersomnia would mean you have an underlying issue causing your hypersomnia. The difference lies in whether the problem is caused by a natural disorder or not.
Finding out which symptoms you are experiencing is the key to determining whether hypersomnia should be a concern.
Otherwise, rest easy since there are medical options for whatever you are suffering, depending on your condition. That includes an underlying issue that you did not know about.
Besides that, the doctor might employ other tests to be sure of what they are dealing with. You may need to fill in a questionnaire regarding your sleeping issues, including the Stanford Sleepiness Scale questionnaire. They could also monitor your brain waves, heart rate, muscle reflexes, and more to dig out any disorders.
Using an actigraphy sensor is also an option to monitor whether you have inconsistencies in your sleep-wake patterns. Lastly, the doctor may decide on sleep latency tests to see how easy it is for you to fall asleep during the day.
The diagnosis can be conclusive if you still deal with sleepiness after the standard sleeping time (7 hours), sleep past 9 hours but still experience sleepiness, or fall asleep severally in a day. Additionally, if you portray the same three times every week for several months, there is a huge possibility that hypersomnia is a growing worry for you.
Causes of Hypersomnia
Before you can figure out how to avoid excessive sleep, you need to know why it’s even happening in the first place.
The causes of oversleeping are either secondary or primary.
Primary causes of hypersomnia include narcolepsy type 1 and 2, idiopathic hypersomnia, and Kleine Levin Syndrome.
Secondary hypersomnia is caused by other factors, including disease, drug use, sleep deprivation, excess fatigue, sleep apnea, inconsistent sleep-wake time, other sleep disorders, mental issues, being overweight, etc.
Characteristics of Hypersomnia
People with excessive daytime sleepiness tend to fall asleep several times during the day, sleep for long periods without feeling refreshed later, feel sleepy after sleeping for the recommended amount of time, and sleep at different times during the day and night.
Symptoms of Hypersomnia
Here is a list of things to watch out for as far as hypersomnia is concerned:
- Excessive Sleepiness In Daytime Hours
- Oversleeping And Remaining Sleepy Afterward
- Having A Hard Time Staying Alert During The Day
- Straining To Wake Up After Falling Asleep
- Barely Feeling Refreshed After Naps Or Long Sleeping Hours
- Confusion After Waking Up
- Difficulty Making Decisions
- Low Concentration Levels
- Short-Term Memory Issues
- Slurred Speech
- Increased Restlessness
Notably, these might not be the only symptoms associated with and limited to hypersomnia.
Do “Wake Up Pills” and Supplements Have Any Effect?
Some people will settle for things like caffeine to keep them awake. On the other hand, you may be able to achieve your goal by ingesting “wake up pills.” Nonetheless, they may cause detrimental effects on your overall health. Being hyperactive can also lead to poor judgment, fatigue, headaches, increased heart rate, and irritability.
You could settle for natural options, even though it is not an assured success for you. Try to have a greater focus on how to improve your sleeping habits instead of settling for pills or supplements to assist you.
What Are the Common Causes of Excessive Daytime Sleeping?
As mentioned previously, underlying sleep disorders may lead to excessive daytime sleeping. Other notable reasons for the same are substance abuse, taking medication that causes drowsiness, inconsistency in sleeping schedules, sleep deprivation, underlying health conditions, and more.
Psychiatric disorders such as depression are known to affect patients’ sleeping patterns. Also, panic attacks, schizophrenia, psychosis, and anxiety could contribute to the same.
How Much Sleep Do You Really Need?
Depending on the age and activity, the recommended sleep hours vary. Other factors include health problems, drug use, level of alertness required for your everyday activities, and work shifts.
Children may need 10-17 hours a day since their bodies can get tired quickly.
7-10 hours per night is the standard time for adults, with more sleeping hours recommended for the elderly.
Overall, maintain a healthy sleep routine to avoid disorders, fatigue, or other health issues from sleep deprivation or oversleeping.
Is It Okay to Sleep 12 Hours a Day?
For the normal adult, sleeping 12 hours a day is considered as long sleeping. You might need that rest if you have extra long days constantly working or barely taking breaks on weekdays. Some drugs like mood stabilisers or antidepressants may also be why you have long sleeping hours.
It does not mean that sleeping for long hours is an issue as it depends on the individual. Consequently, long sleepers need 10-12 hours of sleep to remain functional after waking up.
However, if you notice a shift in your daily habits due to sleep, you should see a doctor. Meanwhile, a good sleep routine will prevent you from worrying about yourself, even when you sleep for long.
Why Do You Keep Oversleeping?
Your lifestyle, sleeping habits, health condition, and age contribute to your oversleeping. Some contributors include:
- Weight issues
- Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome
- Sleep deprivation
- Excessive fatigue
- Drug abuse
- Other diseases, including diabetes, heart conditions, stroke, etc.
Things You Can Try to Help Your Sleeping Habits
If you are wondering how to stop feeling sleepy, here are a few home remedies for excessive sleepiness.
Get Up and Move Around to Feel Awake
Staying in the same place for too long may increase boredom and lack of concentration. Getting up and moving around helps improve blood flow and increase brain activity. If you cannot move from where you are, common helpers include fidgeting, stress balls, or fidget spinners that will keep your mind awake.
Give Your Eyes a Break to Avoid Fatigue
If you stare so much at your screens or books, your eyes may start reddening, itching, aching, or feeling heavy.
Taking a much-needed break will help you avoid sleepiness while studying. It also helps you avoid headaches related to eye fatigue that could lead to excessive sleeping.
Use the 20/20/20 rule to prevent eye strain.
Eat a Healthy Snack to Boost Energy
Wondering what to eat to avoid sleep? Think about fruits, vegetables, or nuts packing a punch of energy you need to stay awake.
Also, healthy eating will help you stay in shape and avoid weight problems that cause oversleeping.
Start a Conversation to Wake Up Your Mind
Especially if you are alone or working long hours, find someone who can lighten the mood with a heated topic and keep you from falling asleep.
Turn Up the Lights to Ease Fatigue
Bright lights will keep you more alert as you work, while dim lights push your fatigue to another level. Again, the eye fatigue concept pops up here. Dim lighting gets your eyes tired, unlike bright lights that reduce eye strain.
Take a Breather to Feel Alert
Breathing exercises are a crucial part of ensuring you remain calm and focused. While it seems simple, focused breathing has several health benefits, such as good blood circulation, alleviating fatigue, and improving your heart rate.
Switch Tasks to Stimulate Your Mind
Imagine a chef in the kitchen keeping up with different tasks and activities to get everything running. The level of brain activity required will ensure their mind stays stimulated to handle the task at hand. If you were typing, get up and skip or follow a simple recipe you found on the internet.
Drink Water to Prevent Tiredness
Your body’s composition is largely water. It is essential for physical and cellular activity in your system. Losing excessive fluids from your body leads to dehydration and general body weakness.
So, how do you stay awake when tired? Take water, fresh juice, maybe even that sweet cup of camomile tea to keep the fluids in your body at optimum.
Get Some Daylight to Regulate Your Sleep Cycles
If you are used to staying inside all day, holed up in your space, it is high time to change that. Avoid oversleeping during the day by walking or basking in the sun for a while to stimulate your sight and mind.
Try a Shot of Caffeine
Caffeine in moderation will keep you alert for a while since it is a stimulant. It is an excellent way to stay awake at night to study.
However, avoid overindulging to prevent fatigue problems from hyperactivity.
Listen to Upbeat Music
Instead of something lullaby-sounding, find something groovy to listen to during the day to help excite your mind. Furthermore, silence cultures boredom, rendering you sleepy.
Turn on the Fan
That cool breeze is what you may need to keep you from sleeping. Additionally, it will prevent stuffiness, excess humidity, and heat in the room that could encourage eye heaviness.
Splash Your Face with Cold Water
Cold water will awaken your brain, especially if you do not like the idea of having cold water touching your body. Splash your face with water if you feel sleepy to boost your brain activity and help you feel fresh.
If you’re looking for how to get rid of sleepiness instantly, a splash of cold water will definitely help.
We hope this answers your questions – How To Avoid Excessive Sleep? And how to stay awake when tired? These activities will definitely help you stay awake at night to study and get rid of sleepiness instantly during the day.
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