Narcolepsy is a chronic neurological disorder associated with the inability o the brain to regulate normally the cycles of sleep. Sleeping in people with narcolepsy begins with a stage of sleep with a rapid eye movement (for 5 minutes), while in most people this phase of sleep begins not earlier than an hour after falling asleep. One of the many problems that some narcoleptics face is cataplexy, sudden muscle weakness caused by strong emotions (although many people experience cataplexy and without emotional upheavals).
Treatment of narcolepsy includes the use of drugs and psychotherapy. Treatment options depend on each person individually, on the severity of the symptoms, the diseases that are observed in a person, the type of work or occupation, and the goals of the treatment (for example, alleviating some of the symptoms). Treatment of the symptoms of the disease can last for weeks and includes a visit to the doctor.
In severe daytime sleepiness, a person needs stimulants, and sometimes a combination of stimulants of different types. With rare cataplexy or other symptoms that are associated with cataplexy, you may not need medication.
Usually, such stimulants of the nervous system as amphetamines, methamphetamine hydrochloride, methylphenidate (ritalin) are prescribed. These drugs are used in narcolepsy to improve concentration and memory. However, these drugs have undesirable side effects, such as increased blood pressure, nervousness, irritability and rarely reactions of a paranoid nature. Also, such medications are addictive, can cause a sense of euphoria. However, the addiction to these drugs in patients with narcolepsy is quite rare.