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Sleep Disorders

Trouble Waking Up



Since a teenager I have had the most difficult time waking up. I have had alarms throughout the bedroom and house, wake up calls and even an alarm where it would shook the bed. I fall into such a deep sleep even when I have had the normal amount of sleep in me. It can take close to two hours to wake me completely. I have had conversations and have done things not even knowing b/c physically I am still asleep. I am now in my late thirties, it has gotten so much worse and I am at my breaking point. What is causing this and how can I seek help.


There are several things that can cause excessive daytime sleepiness. Some of the more common things are diseases that affect the quality of your sleep. About 5% of the population has obstructive sleep apnea, where people stop breathing in the sleep, is an example. It is associated with snoring and most people don’t realize they have a problem while asleep.

Other diseases such as narcolepsy or idiopathic hypersomnia can also cause similar symptoms.

The bottom line, I would recommend you seeing a sleep specialist and then having an overnight sleep study, which can determine if you have sleep apnea or another problem with your sleep.

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Response by:

James   Knepler, MD James Knepler, MD
Formerly, Assistant Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati