Aside from not receiving enough sleep at night, many other psycho-physiological factors may cause drowsiness in the afternoon. You can see a list of conditions leading to chronic EDS below:
- Narcolepsy, parasomnia, sleep apnea are major causes of excessive daytime sleepiness. These disorders prevent healthy, undisturbed sleep. The body attempts to make up for the lost chance to refresh itself by switching to a stand-by regime during the day.
- A biological clock disruption can cause a distorted sense of sleeping and feeding times. This is often caused by changes in time zones, jet lag, shifting in work times, staying up late at night.
- Anxiety, depression can be responsible for insomnia, at times resulting in drowsiness at daytime because of feeling of hopelessness and moral despair. This makes people feel mentally and physically inactive.
- Abnormalities in the functioning of endocrine, in particular those dealing with hormonal imbalances related to thyroid gland can provoke excessive daytime sleepiness.
- Anemia, disorders of the kidney, heart, etc., can make people feel weak. In connection with the adverse effects of some medicines, drowsiness and sleepiness during the daytime is quite common.
- Head injuries, malignant tumors in the brain or nervous system may cause excessive daytime sleepiness, which resembles partial loss of consciousness.
- Among other causes there are abusing narcotics and psychoactive drugs. As a matter of fact, the EDS can be hereditary.
Treatment options for excessive daytime sleepiness
First of all it is necessary to understand that EDS itself is not a disease. It is a symptom of an underlying medical condition. Diagnosis and treatment of the rooted disorder is the only solution to the syndrome of excessive daytime sleepiness. As a temporary way to manage daytime drowsiness, you can use caffeinated drinks like black coffee, tea, etc. Another option is to take psychostimulant medications to enhance mental alertness and stimulate wakefulness, although such drugs require prescription of a medical practitioner and they cannot be bought over the counter.
To conclude we should mention that each succeeding generation is more prone to experiencing sleep disorders than the predecessors. The main reason is mental and physical stress. The sources of stress are extremely diverse and in quantity can be compared to the number of bacteria found in a drop of water. If a sleeping irregularity becomes a habit, and the habit has the dimensions of a medical case, this can be serious. What you need to do is stay alert to this type of irregularities, and take serious, timely actions to fix excessive daytime sleepiness.