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