Epilepsy, migraine

Sleep Hygiene especially for Migraineurs and those with Epilepsy

By Virginia Thornley, M.D., Neurologist, Epileptologist
February 15, 2018

Many neurological diseases are affected by lack of sleep most significantly migraine and epilepsy. A person performs suboptimally with lack of sleep with inattention and lack of coordination. In someone with a neurological condition, the symptoms become even more manifest. Weakness becomes more prominent, double vision may be more pronounced and difficulty speaking will become more prominent. Sleep plays a vital role in the restorative function of the body.

Stages of sleep, why adequate and continuous sleep is refreshing
Sleep is divided into 2 categories, Non-REM (rapid eye movement) sleep and REM sleep. During non-REM sleep, there are 4 stages. Stage 1 and 2 constitute drowsiness which transitions into light sleep. The electroencephalogram is a study that reflects brain activity. Stages 1 and 2 demonstrates sleep complexes including vertex waves then K complexes. Sleep spindles occur during stage 2 sleep. During stages 3 and 4 also known as slow-wave sleep, delta waves which are the slowest waves between 1-3 Hertz start to occur. Stage 4 shows delta waves of greater than 50% of the recording. People enter these stages of sleep and then subsequent REM sleep. REM sleep is where dreaming occurs.

One can go through a few cycles of these so that you wake up refreshed. Continue reading