Difference Between Narcolepsy Brain and Normal Brain

An incapacitating sleep disease called narcolepsy is characterized by extreme daytime drowsiness and unusual signs of rapid eye movement sleep. Research shows that narcolepsy affects around one in 2,000 people in the United States. The neurological condition narcolepsy, commonly known as “sleep attacks,” affects how the brain regulates a person’s sleep and awake cycles.

Narcolepsy Brain vs Normal Brain

Nowadays many people have narcolepsy. Daily tasks might be significantly impacted by narcolepsy. Even while they are in the middle of an activity like chatting, eating, or driving, people might unintentionally fall asleep. Males and females are equally affected by narcolepsy. While symptoms can appear at any stage in life, they frequently begin in childhood, adolescence, or young adulthood.

The difference between Narcolepsy and Normal Brain is that Narcolepsy might have a big impact on daily actions. Only 10 to 25% of those with the condition will also have the other symptoms, despite the fact that everyone has excessive daytime drowsiness. There are thought to be between 130,000 and 200,000 cases of narcolepsy in the US.

On the other hand, normal brain several things you may do to keep your brain in shape, including reading, playing cards, jigsaw puzzles, Sudoku, and crossword puzzles. Think of it as cerebral cross-training. Therefore, mix up your tasks to boost efficiency. Maintaining a social life may have the opposite impact and promote brain health.

Comparison Table Between Narcolepsy Brain and Normal Brain

Parameters of comparisonNarcolepsyNormal brain
ThinkingUnstable thinkingStable thinking
RecognitionBlurryClear
Rapid eye movement15 minutes60-85minutes
HallucinationsHappenDoesn’t happen
Oversleeping during the dayHappenNever happen

What is Narcolepsy Brain?

Both neurological conditions and sleep disorders are called narcolepsy. Your sleep-wake cycles are impacted by changes in your brain, which are the cause of the illness. Narcolepsy initially frequently results in difficulties falling asleep at night as well as difficulties remaining awake throughout the day. You could also have additional symptoms, such a sudden paralysis of the muscles. Such symptoms might make it challenging to carry out regular responsibilities.

Narcolepsy comes in two different forms:

The first is Cataplexy, low levels of the brain chemical hypocretin, and excessive daytime drowsiness are all symptoms of type 1 narcolepsy in sufferers. The second form of narcolepsy patients have severe daytime drowsiness but do not experience cataplexy and have normal hypocretin levels.

Changes in the hypothalamus area of your brain lead to the development of narcolepsy. Your brain stem is above this little gland. The release of hormones that have an impact on various bodily organs is regulated in part by the hypothalamus. For instance, it’s in charge of releasing hypocretins, which aid in controlling sleep. The cause of the death of hypocretin neurons is unknown to science.

Some hypothesize that narcolepsy is caused by an autoimmune illness that targets the brain cells that make hypocretin because individuals with narcolepsy have higher-than-average levels of anti-streptolysin O antibodies. The autoimmune system theory is supported by the seasonal start of narcolepsy, which occurs more frequently during the winter season.

What is Normal Brain?

The brain is a complex organ that controls every body function, including intellect, memory, emotion, touch, motor skills, vision, breathing, temperature, and hunger.. Regardless of the presence or absence of illnesses, brain health is the condition of brain functioning throughout the cognitive, sensory, social-emotional, behavioral, and motor domains that enables a person to reach their full potential during the course of their life.

By addressing these variables, one may enhance not just one’s mental and physical health but also one’s social and economic situation, all of which promote well-being and progress in society.

Numerous studies have shown that people who are physically active have a decreased chance of getting Alzheimer’s disease and are less likely to have a loss in their mental function. Many individuals believe that these benefits are due to increased blood flow to the brain during exercise. How well you sleep affects your capacity to think effectively.

It’s crucial to make an effort to obtain seven to eight hours of uninterrupted sleep every night, as opposed to sleeping in two- or three-hour bursts. The brain requires time to adequately organize and maintain memories, which undisturbed sleep supplies.

Main Differences Between Narcolepsy Brain and Normal Brain

  1. An autoimmune condition. An individual’s immune system destroys the brain cells that make hypocretin, which causes a deficiency of this substance, which doesn’t happen to normal brain.
  2. Despite normal brain, people with narcolepsy can suffer with memory problems up to completely forgetting a certain thing.
  3. Another narcolepsy symptom is insomnia, when a person cannot sleep for up to several days which doesn’t appear in normal brain.
  4. Persons with narcolepsy often fall asleep for several seconds, but continue to do some tasks, which normal brain doesn’t.
  5. Unlike normal brain, people with narcolepsy brain are having difficulties with concentration.

Conclusion

With narcolepsy, often known as “sleep attacks,” a person’s ability to regulate their sleep and awake cycles is severely impaired. A lot of daytime drowsiness, cataplexy, sleep paralysis, disturbed sleep, hallucinations, and automatic behavior are among the symptoms. The disorder has been attributed to genes, the disappearance of the neurotransmitter hypocretin, and immunological reactions to certain infections.

Other sleep problems, including obstructive sleep apnea, which causes periodic pauses in breathing during the night, restless legs syndrome, and even insomnia, may also be present in narcoleptics. Some narcoleptics exhibit automatic behavior during brief episodes of the disorder. For instance, you may doze off while writing, typing, or driving—tasks that you would otherwise perform—and carry them out while still asleep.

You can’t recall what you did when you wake up, and it’s likely that you didn’t do it very well. Narcolepsy can impede psychological, social, and cognitive function and development as well as academic, occupational, and social activities if it is not properly recognized or treated.

Narcolepsy cannot be cured, however some of the symptoms can be managed with medication and dietary adjustments. The loss of hypocretin during cataplexy is thought to be permanent and irreversible. Most people can reduce their cataplexy and excessive daytime drowsiness with medicine.

References

  1. https://academic.oup.com/sleep/article-abstract/32/8/993/2679679
  2. https://n.neurology.org/content/65/8/1184.short
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