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Sleep Disorders and Symptoms

Sleep disorders affect millions of people in the United States, most of whom do not realize they suffer from a sleep disorder. If you think you may suffer from a sleep disorder, contact your primary care physician for a referral to Roane Medical Center.

For more information, please call the Roane Medical Sleep Center at (865)316-2876.

Types of Disorders

Chronic Fatigue

This disorder produces an ongoing feeling of tiredness, malaise, sleepiness, boredom, or depression. Chronic Fatigue has various causes and is sometimes associated with a sleep disorder.


The most common sleep disorder, insomnia is described as the inability to initiate or maintain sleep. It is associated with daytime fatigue and sleepiness that is often the result of stress, illness, environmental factors, or other conditions that throw off a normal sleep schedule.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

This disorder occurs when air cannot flow in or out of a person’s nose or mouth, although efforts to breathe continue. OSA is caused by mechanical and structural problems in the airway that cause interruptions in breathing. Examples of these problems include when the throat muscles and tongue relax or when there’s an excessive amount of tissue in the airway. These mechanical and structural problems can result in choking sensations during sleep and are almost always accompanied by snoring between apnea episodes.


Narcolepsy manifests itself through excessive daytime sleepiness, uncontrollable sleep attacks and muscle weakness triggered by sudden emotional reactions such as laughter or fear. It is sometimes accompanied by vivid dream-like scenes or paralysis upon falling asleep or waking.


This disorder may include nightmares, chest pain, night terrors, sleepwalking and sleep talking. It most commonly occurs in childhood and sometimes worsens during adolescence and adulthood.

Restless legs syndrome (RLS)

RLS is a neurological-movement disorder characterized by abnormal, uncomfortable creepy-crawling sensations in the legs that typically occur or worsen when a person is at rest. The uncomfortable feeling results in constant moving of the legs and prevents a restful sleep.

Sleep/Wake Cycle Disorders

This disorder is accompanied by symptoms of insomnia or sleepiness at inappropriate times and is commonly associated with patients who work rotating schedules, suffer from jet lag, or have insufficient sleep syndrome. It can become progressive and chronic, but can be treated with medication and therapy.