Hypersomnia may not be the most commonly talked about sleep disorder, but it affects thousands of individuals. Those who have hypersomnia suffer from an excessive amount of sleepiness. Some patients with hypersomnia have trouble staying awake even during things like working or driving. Others may sleep for hours without waking up. Treating hypersomnia may be difficult because treatment often relies on finding and addressing the underlying cause of the sleep disorder. Hypersomnia still is not fully understood, but doctors have found certain conditions and lifestyles can cause the problem to develop. If you have hypersomnia, it may be caused by one or more of these problems.
Hypersomnia is not always a chronic condition caused by some dangerous health problem. It can be a situational issue that only occurs occasionally as a response to sleep deprivation. If you severely deprive your body of sleep, you might find you end up with hypersomnia in the days following the lack of sleep. Either partial or total deprivation can cause hypersomnia. Those with partial deprivation are individuals who just get too little sleep for several days in a row. Continuously getting less than seven or six hours a night may end up causing a bout of hypersomnia. Severe, total deprivation is even more likely to cause hypersomnia. This is a type of sleep deprivation that involves being awake for more than twenty-four hours at a time. Even this short of deprivation can result in hypersomnia, and it is particularly likely after seventy-two hours without sleep. In general, you should never go without sleep for more than thirty-six hours.
Continue reading to learn more about the potential causes of hypersomnia.