Parkinson’s Sleep Disorder
Updated: Sep 27, 2019
Sleep problems can be an early sign of Parkinson’s disease, even before motor symptoms have begun. These sleep-related symptoms can have a major impact on quality of life for people suffering from Parkinson’s. Some of the common sleep conditions include: insomnia, excessive daytime sleepiness, Periodic leg movement disorder (PLMD), sleep apnea, frequent nighttime urination, Restless legs syndrome (RLS), a sudden involuntary episode of sleep.
Many people with Parkinson’s experience sleep problem called “REM sleep behavior disorder.” Research suggests that “REM sleep behavior disorder” sometimes begins even before motor symptoms are diagnosed. Person experiencing vivid dreams or hallucinations and acting out their dreams and violent nightmares may have a “REM sleep behavior disorder”.
Most people with Parkinson’s find it difficult to sleep through the night because of rigid muscles, tremors or stiffness, not being able to roll over in bed and the frequent urge to urinate. In addition to sleep problems, people with Parkinson's disease often experience sleepiness during the daytime.
Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for us all, not sleeping well at night can interfere with daily life. Person with Parkinson’s can feel drowsy during the day and often fall asleep suddenly for short periods of time, similar to narcolepsy. Effort to maintain healthy sleep habits can help people struggling with Parkinson’s disease with both the physical and psychological symptoms.