Posts Tagged ‘disorders

manheadacheWhen you’re feeling stressed on the job, it can be hard to leave work at the office. Your job may preoccupy your mind as you drive, as you eat, and as you interact with family or friends. But the battle to control your mind can intensify when you try to go to sleep.

Sleep and stress are competitors. When stress continually activating a part of the brain that is otherwised used for sleep, then stress wins the tug-of-war.

According the AASM, job stress can be a cause of adjustment insomnia. This involves disturbed sleep or sleeplessness that may last for a few days or a few weeks. Other symptoms may include anxiety, worry and tension.

A common feature of adjustment insomnia is “ruminative thoughts.”  This is when you dwell on the same thoughts, chewing them over and over in your mind. You may lie in bed staring at the ceiling, unable to stop thinking about work. Even when you finally fall asleep, your work may invade your dreams. The Staples National Small-Business Survey polled 302 owners and executives of small businesses, and more than half said they dream about work -or “sleepwork.”

Scientific research confirms that job stress can affect your sleep. In 2005 a study in the journal Sleep involved 8,770 Japanese workers. In both men and women, a high level of stress at work was liked to insomnia.

A 2007 study in the International Journal of Behavioral Medicine linked insomnia to these three types of job stressors:

  • High work demand
  • Low influence over decisions
  • High professional compromise

The type of job stress you experience may affect your sleep in different ways. Another study linked work overload to poor sleep quality.  Having role conflicts at work was related to non-restorative sleep and trouble falling asleeo or staying asleep.

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, sleep disturbances are one early warning sign of job stress. Others may include:

  • Headaches
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Short temper
  • Upset stomach
  • Job dissatisfaction
  • Low morale

Job stress may be unavoidable. But sleep specialists say you can take steps to improve your sleep even when you are stressed.  Establishing a pattern of relaxing behaviors close to bedtime and limiting work to the early evening may help to reduce stress.

Here are jus a few more tips to help you be less restless with work worries:

  • Remain active
    Try to get some exervise every day. Both your mind and body will be more relaxed when its bedtime.
  • Express yourself
    Take some time to slow down before going to bed. Get away from the computer, turn off the TV and the cell phone, and relax quietly for 15 to 30 minutes. Take a warm bath, enjoy a light snack or listen to some soft music.
  • Avoid “bedwork”
    Never bring any work to bed with  you; your bed should be refuge from your job. Also avoid doing other activities in bed such as reading, watching TV or talking on the phone. Only use your bed for sleep.
  • Get out of bed
    If you have trouble falling asleep, get out of bed and do something relaxing until you feel sleep agian. Tossing and turning will only increase your frustrations.
  • See a specialist
    Some doctors are specialists in behavioral sleep medicine. They can teach you how to relax at bedtime so you can fall asleep more easily.

Ever wake up and not remember having sex the night before? Yah, me neither but there are some people out there that do (and not with the help of roofies or alcohol). According to a piece in Newsweek, a new sleep disorder has come to the forefront called sexsomnia (not to be mistaken with “sexmania,” which if it isn’t the name of a porn yet it surely should be).

  Add sex to the roster of unlikely sleep behaviors known as parasomnias, which rang from sleep driving to sleep eating. Think of it as a more advanced form of sleepwalking. Publishing of the journal Sleep on what they call “sleepsex” or “sexsomnia,” covers the full gamut of sexual activity, from fondling to intercourse, with one crucial difference, the people apparently have no conscious awareness of what they’re doing and, when wakened, have no recollection of it.

I know this is probably a tragic disorder to have, but the idea of hearing a guy apologize in the middle of the night, “Sorry baby. I didn’t know. I have sexsomnia,” cracks me up! J

So just when you thought that your partner was just being frisky in the night, could seriously have a problem, and mostly likely, should see someone. A survey was conducted gathered data from 219 people, 92% of whom had experienced multiple “sexsomnia” episodes.

People are at-risk for developing sex-related sleep disorders when they also tend to suffer from other sleep disorders-such as sleepwalking or sleep terrors. So, sexsomnia doesn’t come out from nowhere, for whatever reason, sexual behaviors become part of the repertoire.

These disorders were thought to have indicative psychological problems, but it does not necessarily reflect a daytime psychological problem. And “sexsomnia” disorders can easily be treated with medication. The longer you go with this problem without getting it properly treated, the more you can develop a secondary psychological problem such as depression.

With so much being publicized of the existence of sexsomnia, doctors and researchers are hoping it will cause more people to seek help. The condition is highly treatable; seeking help can only work to a sufferer’s advantage. After all, if you’re going to have sex, you might as well enjoy it, right!

…When I saw this, I thought what are we thinking! Really, snorting brain chemicals? They’re brain chemicals, they should be in our brains, not us snorting them up there! I hope that this never makes it to the market!…. What would you do? Would you snort a ‘brain chemical’ just to get some sleep or would you do the old fashion-ed tricks and get some rest?



In what sounds like a dream for millions of tired coffee drinkers, Darpa-funded scientists might have found a drug that will eliminate sleepiness.


  A nasal spray containing a naturally occurring brain hormone called orexin A, it reversed the effects of sleep deprivation in monkeys, allowing them to perform like well-rested monkeys on cognitive tests. The discovery’s first application will probably be in treatment of the severe sleep disorder narcolepsy.


  The treatment is “a totally new route for increasing arousal, and the new study shows it to be relatively benign,” states a profession of psychiatry at UCLA, “It reduces the sleepiness without causing edginess.”


  Orexin A is a promising candidate to become a “sleep replacement” drug. For decades, stimulants have been used to combat sleepiness, but they can be addictive and often have side effects, including raising blood pressure or causing mood swings. The military, for example, administers amphetamines to pilots flying long distances, and had funded research into new drugs like the stimulant modafinil and orexin A in an effort to help troops stay awake with fewest side effects.


  The monkeys were deprived of sleep for 30 -36 hours and then given either orexin A or a saline placebo before taking standard cognitive tests. The monkeys given orexin A in a nasal spray scored about the same as alert monkeys, while the saline-control group was severely impaired.


  The study, plublished in the edition of The Journal of Neuroscience, found orexin A not only restored monkey’s cognitive abilities but made their brains look “awake” in PET scans.


  Siegel said that orexin A is unique in that it only had an impact on sleepy monkeys, not alert ones, and that it is “specific in reversing the effects of sleepiness” without other impacts on the brain.


  Such a product could be widely desired by the more than 70 percent of Americans who the National Sleep Foundation estimates gets less than generally recommended eight hours of sleep per night.


   The research follows the discovery by Siegel that the absence of orexin A appears to cause narcolepsy. That finding pointed to a major role for the peptide’s absence in causing sleepiness. It stood to reason that it the deficit of orexin A makes people sleepy, adding it back into the brain would reduce the effects.


  “What we’ve been doing so far is increasing arousal without dealing with the underlying problem,” “If the underlying deficit is a loss of orexin, and it clearly is, then the best treatment would be orexin.”


  Dr. Michael Twery, at the National Center of Sleep Disorders Research, said that while research into drugs for sleepiness is “very interesting,” he cautioned that the long term consequences of not sleeping were not well-known.


  Both Twery and Siegel noted that it is unclear wheather or not treating the brain chemistry behind sleepiness would alleviate the other problems associated with sleep deprivation.


  “New research indicates that not getting enough sleep is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and metabolic disorders.”


I guess these UK scientists should see that we Americans have this under control (snicker) with our self-medicating with caffeine. – ORGN. “we have to realize that we are already living in a society where we are already self-medicating with caffeine. Siegel said.


  He also stated that modafinil, which is marketed as Provigil by cephalon and alertec in Canada, has become widely used by healthy individuals for managing sleepiness.


  “We have these other precedents, and it’s not clear that you can’t use orexin A temporarily to reduce sleep,” Siegel said. “On the other hand, you’d have to be a fool to advocate taking this and reducing sleep as much as possible.”


    Sleep advocates probably won’t have to worry about orexin A reaching drugstore shelves for many years. Any commercial treatment using the substance would need approval from the Food and Drug Admin, which can take more than a decade.