Sleep Disorders Glossary – N to Z

By on June 25, 2012

For Sleep Glossary A to M

Sleep Disorders Glossary - N to ZN

Nap: This is nothing the sleeping for shorter period, usually taken during the daytime.
Narcolepsy: It is also known as dyssomnia, in which the person experiences excessive sleepiness, or falls asleep in inappropriate times, like while working, etc.
Nightmare: They are nothing but scary or unpleasant dream. These dreams are generally caused due to mind’s negative emotional response towards fear, etc.
Night Owl: These people are also known as evening persons. These are the people who are active or stay awake until late in night.
Night Sweats: It is medically known as Sleep hyperhidrosis. A person with this will have excessive sweating while sleeping.
Night Terrors or Pavor Nocturnes or Sleep Terrors: This is type of parasomnia, which is characterized by feeling death or terror during the 3rd and 4th stage of NREM sleep.
Nocturia: It is the need to awake from middle of the sleep to fulfill the urge of urinating. This results in interruption of sleep.
Nocturnal Confusion: These are generally observed in the Alzheimer’s patients, in which they have delirium and/or disorientation episodes during nighttime sleep.
Nocturnal Enuresis or Bed Wetting: This is nothing but involuntary urination while in sleep.
Nocturnal Myoclonus or Periodic Limb Movement Disorder: This is type of sleep disorder, which is characterized by involuntary movement of limbs while in sleep.
Nocturnal Sleep-related Eating Disorder: It is also known as Night eating syndrome (NES), or midnight hunger, which is characterized by persistent binge eating during late-nights.
Non-REM sleep: It is Non-Rapid Eye Movement sleep stage. These are first 3 stages of sleep, which occur before REM sleep stage.


Obstructive Hypopnea: This reduction of breathing while in sleeping due to periodic partial closing of throat.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea: The sleep apnea which is cause due to obstruction of upper airway. This is most common type of sleep apnea.
Orexin: It is also known as hypocretin, which is neurotransmitter that involves in the regulation of wakefulness, arousal and appetite.


Parasomnia: This is a classification of sleep disorders, which is characterized by abnormal behaviors, emotion movements, dreams and perceptions during various stages of sleep.
Pathological Sleep: This is nothing but abnormal patterns of sleep.
Persistent Insomnia: This characterized by experiencing insomnia symptoms for very longer period, and which is hardly reacts to any treatment.
Pickwickian Syndrome: It is also known as Obesity hypoventilation syndrome. This is generally observed in overweight people, who fail to breath deep enough or rapid enough. This indeed results in lowering of oxygen levels and increasing of carbon dioxide levels in blood.
Polysomnogram: This is an overnight sleep study or test, which is used for studying the sleep of a person.
Poor Sleep Habits: These the habits that result in improper or inadequate sleep
Postprandial Drowsiness: This is the state of drowsiness, which is experienced after taking afternoon meal.
Posttraumatic Hypersomnia: It is characterized by experiencing excessive sleepiness, which is resultant of head injury or any trauma involving central nervous system.
Power Nap: A sleep for shorter period, which generally, terminates before going to deep sleep. This will help in quick revitalization of the person.
Primary Snoring: The simple snoring, which is not associated with sleep apnea, benign snoring is known as primary snoring.
Pupillometry: It is the measurement for eye pupil response with respect to the sleepiness and alertness of the person.


Rebound Insomnia: It is the insomnia, which occurs after discontinuation of sedative that are taken to treat primary insomnia.
Recurrent Hypersomnia: It is characterized by experiencing recurrent excessive sleepiness episodes many times in a year mixing up with normal sleep cycle periods.
REM Sleep: It is the normal stage of sleep, which is characterized by rapid eye movement in sleep. This is stage where dreams are experienced.
REM Sleep Behavior Disorder: This is in short known as RBD, which is characterized by abnormal behavior during REM sleep stage.
Restless Legs Syndrome: In short known as RLS, and also known as Willis-Ekbom disease. It involves irresistible urge for movement of legs in sleep in order to overcome odd sensation.
Restlessness: It refers to the recurrent brief awakening from sleep or body movement while sleep, resulting in insufficient sleep.


Seasonal Affective Disorder: In short known as SAD. It is also known by the names winter blues, winter depression, summer blues, and summer depression. It is type of mood disorder, in which the person feels depressed in winter or summer.
Sedatives or Sleeping Pills or Hypnotic: These the drugs which are used for inducing sleep. These drugs are often used for treating insomnia.
Septoplasty: It is a surgical procedure used for correcting or straightening the nasal septum.
Serotonin: This is the neurotransmitter, which is responsible the regulation of sleep, mood and appetite. The chemical name for serotonin is 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT).
Siesta: It is a short nap, which is generally taken during early afternoon, often after consuming lunch.
Short-term Insomnia: It is commonly known as transient insomnia, in which the patient experiences for less than a week or so. This may caused due to severe stress, severe depression, or changes in sleep environment.
Sleep: It is natural recurring activity in which there is partial or complete loss of consciousness, and relaxation of mind and all voluntary muscles of the body.
Sleep Apnea: It is type of sleep disorder, in which the patient experiences abnormally low or pausing of breathe in sleep. This will last from few seconds to a minute. And it may occur nearly 5 to 25 times in an hour.
Sleep Architecture: It is something, which explains the sleep patterns and structure in various stages of sleep.
Sleep Center: It is place for research on sleep disorders is done.
Sleep Cycle: It is the cycle NREM and REM sleep stages, which occur alternatively in a 90 to 110 minutes of phase. While sleeping, nearly 4 to 5 such sleep cycles will take place.
Sleep Debts: It is the accumulation of lost sleep, which is a result of not getting enough sleep.
Sleep Deprivation: It is situation of not having sufficient sleep.
Sleep Disorders: It is also known as somnipathy. It is a disorder, which is related to the sleeping patterns of human beings and animals.
Sleep Efficiency: It is the ratio of actual time of spent while asleep to the time spent on bed.
Sleep Episode: It is total time for which a person was asleep voluntarily or involuntarily.
Sleep Hygiene: It is various environmental and behavioral practices that are to be followed for getting a sufficient restful nighttime sleep.
Sleep Inertia: It is state of transition, which is followed immediately after abrupt awakening. It is characterized by lowering of arousal resulting in decline of motor dexterity temporarily.
Sleep Interruption: These are interruptions in the sleep, which resulting in waking up from sleep.
Sleep Log or Sleep Diary: It is generally self report or sometimes maintained by the care taker. This is the report maintaining the sleeping and awakening time, generally for a couple of weeks.
Sleep Medicine: These are the medicines used for diagnosing and treating various sleep disorders.
Sleep Onset: It is the transition of a person from the state of wakefulness to sleep.
Sleep Paralysis: It is the paralyzing of body in sleep. This is generally association with other sleep disorders like narcolepsy, hypnagogic hallucinations, and cataplexy. This may be sometimes experienced even in normal persons too.
Sleep Restriction Therapy: It is type of behavioral therapy used for increasing the sleep effectiveness. It is characterized by initially limiting the sleeping hours of a person, and then increasing the sleeping hours. This will in turn helps in improving the sleep effectiveness. This therapy was developed by Dr. Arthur Spielman and by his colleagues.
Sleeping Sickness: Also known as Human African trypanosomiasis or African sleeping sickness. It is parasitic disease caused by the protozoa of Trypanosoma brucei. Tsetse fly bite is responsible for the transmission of this disease in humans. This disease is found in Sub-Saharan region, which is covering nearly 37 countries of Africa. It is characterized by fever, head ache, itching, joint pains, and severe swelling of lymph nodes in the first stage. And in the second stage, it is characterized by weakness, confusion, disruption of sleep cycle, daytime slumber, and insomnia.
Sleep Talking: Medically term as somniloquy, is type of parasomnia, in which the patient talks while in sleeping.
Sleep Wake Cycle: It is a natural recurring 24 hours cycle, which consists of altering sleep and wakefulness.
Sleep Walking: Medically termed as somnambulism, is a parasomnia sleep disorder, in which the patient does activities that are generally done in full consciousness while still in sleep. These activities include walking, sitting on bed, etc. Sometimes, take can even do some dangerous activities like cooking, having sex, killing someone, driving, etc.
Slow Eye Movement: It is the slow movement of eye, during the NREM stage of sleep.
Smart Positive Airway Pressure: This is one more type of respiratory device, which is used for treating sleep apnea.
Snoring: This is the noise created due to obstruction of airway during breathing while in sleep. This noise is created as result of vibrations in the respiratory structure.
Somnoplasty: This is a medical treatment used for treating obstructive sleep apnea and snoring. This treatment involves shrinking of tissues responsible for obstruction of airway with help of radioactive ablation.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: Abbreviated as SIDS is infant disease, which is characterized by the death of infant without any cause.


Teeth Grinding or Bruxism: It is sleep disorder, which involves grinding of teeth while in sleep.
Tonsillectomy: This is surgical method for treating obstructive sleep apnea, which involves in surgical removal of tonsils.
Transient Insomnia: see Short-term Insomnia.


Unihemispheric Sleep: Also known as Unihemispheric slow wave sleep, which is the ability of sleeping, in which one half of brain is inactive and the other half of the brain is active.
Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome Abbreviated as UARS is a sleep disorder, which involves obstruction in airway, while breathing in sleep.
Uvula: It is also known as palatine uvula, which is a small soft conical muscle tissue, which projects from the center of soft palate.
Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty: It is abbreviates as UPPP, which is a surgical procedure used for treating loud snoring, and even for obstructive sleep apnea. This surgery involves in removal of tissues in throat.

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