Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a disorder which is characterized by hyperactivity, inattentiveness, and/or impulsivity. It is a condition which begins in childhood and might persist into adulthood. People with ADHD have trouble focusing and sitting still. They may also have a hard time controlling their behavior and emotions, which can lead to isolation, dependence, poor social skills, and poor performance at school.
Approximately 4.4% or 10.5
million adults are estimated to have ADHD
While ADHD presents a number of issues of its own, it is also linked to different kinds of sleep problems. For instance, a recent study found that people with ADHD have higher rates of daytime sleepiness than those without. Those with ADHD also have trouble keeping a schedule, therefore, they find it hard to sleep on time.
Sleep Disorders Tied to ADHD
Regardless of whether you are struggling with ADHD or not, sleep disorders are difficult to deal with. If you suffer from one, it can steal your rest and then leave you distracted and impulsive during the day. This is more common with those with ADHD and experts often look at sleep patterns when diagnosing ADHD.
Some of the common sleep disorders linked to ADHD include the following.
1. Circadian-Rhythm Sleep Disorders: Human body has an internal clock. In other words, a lot of changes that take place in your body are due to the different times of the day. This is why it is common to feel sleepy at night. If your body is not in tune with the cycle of the day, then it won’t release melatonin at the right time. This makes it hard to fall asleep.
2. Sleep Apnea: Those with sleep apnea struggle with breathing while they sleep. This does not let you rest and leaves you tired. A lot of people with ADHD have sleep apnea or some other breathing problem during sleeping.
3. Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS): People struggling with RLS often find it hard to get rest as they experience a strong desire to move their legs and limbs while they sleep. They may also experience some discomfort in the limbs. Some people describe the feeling as throbbing, pulling or aching.
Do Your Homework
If you think you are suffering from any of these, there’s a lot you can do to help yourself. Try out the following tips.
- Avoid napping about 4 hours before bedtime.
- Avoid having caffeine around 4 hours before bedtime.
- Keep a regular sleep time.
- Have a calm bedtime routine.
- Sleep in a comfortable bed and in a quiet, dark room.
- Avoid screens (TVs, smartphone, etc.) before bedtime.
Mark any experiences you may have had and check with your doctor. You can explore alternative treatments. Oral sleep appliances have been shown to help with some ADHD symptoms.