Epilepsy and Seizures

Sleep Disorders and Epilepsy

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Sleep is very important for keeping our bodies healthy.  When we do not sleep well, our brains do not function well.  Sleep deprivation is a common trigger for seizures.  There are many reasons why children do not sleep well.  Talk to your doctor if you suspect sleep is a problem for your child. 

Sleep disorders
The three most common childhood sleep disorders are insomnia, hypersomnia, and parasomnia.

  1. Insomnia may include difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep.
  2. Hypersomnia includes narcolepsy, altered sleep patterns (circadian rhythm disorders), obstructive sleep apnea, and Kleine Levin syndrome
  3. Parasomnia includes confusion after awakening, sleepwalking, sleep talking, night terrors, nightmares, periodic limb movements in sleep (restless leg syndrome), and benign sleep myoclonus.

Sleep difficulties are more often seen in children with neurological problems, including epilepsy, autistic spectrum disorders, developmental disorders, hypotonia, cerebral palsy, attention deficit disorders, mood disorders, and movement disorders, including tics.  They are also seen in a number of non-neurological disorders, including obesity, breathing disorders, and structural disorders of ears, mouth, and throat.

For an appointment for sleep evaluation at the Boston Medical Center, please call 617-414-5728.