It affects 1 in 2,000 Americans in the US. About 50% of adults with narcolepsy report symptoms that start in their teenage years. For most patients it begins between the ages of 15 and 30 years. About 6% of sufferers are children less than 10 years old.
Causes of Narcolepsy:
Symptoms of Narcolepsy:
Excessive daytime sleepiness
– people with narcolepsy is prone to falling asleep while engaged in conversation, driving and eating dinner. Sleepiness exists despite a full night’s sleep.
– during transition from wakefulness to sleep, the patient has bizarre, often frightening dream-like experiences that incorporate his or her real environment.
– sudden loss of muscle tone, usually triggered by emotional stimuli such as laughter, surprise, or anger and can result in collapse. It may only affect certain muscle groups and result in slurred speech, buckling of the knees, or weakness in the arms. Consciousness can be maintained but the patient is usually unable to speak.
– temporary inability to move during sleep-wake transitions – may last for a few seconds to several minutes.
Disturbed nocturnal sleep
– waking up repeatedly throughout the night. Leg jerks, nightmares, and restlessness.
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