Know About Various Excessive Daytime Sleepiness Medications

By on April 29, 2014

Excessive daytime sleepiness is also known as hypersomnia. Sleep doctors may prescribe one of the excessive daytime sleepiness medications for treatment.

There are three excessive daytime sleepiness medications, which are approved by FDA for treatment. They are Modafinil, Armodafinil, and Sodium Oxybate.

Excessive Daytime Sleepiness MedicationsEarlier there were medications namely Ritalin (methylphenidate), Vyvanse (lisdexamfetamine), Dexedrine (dextroamphetamine), etc were used for treating EDS, but their usage is declining as their usage showed some adverse effects, and they are also addictive in nature.

Let us know about these excessive daytime sleepiness medications in detail.


This excessive daytime sleepiness medication is sold by the name Provigil. It is a FDA approved medicine not only excessive daytime sleepiness treatment, but also used for treating many other sleep disorders. It acts as a wakeful medicine in treating other sleep disorders like narcolepsy, shift work sleep disorder.

It is also used for treating fatigue and sedation caused by other diseases like fibromyalgia, jet lag, delayed sleep phase syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, depression, myotonic dystrophy, cerebral palsy, etc.

It is always better to use this excessive sleepiness medication on doctor’s advice because it shows few adverse effects on people who already had some cardiac problem, who are hypersensitive to drugs, Cirrhosis, etc. Use this medication shows few side effects like back pain, stomach upset, headaches, nausea, anxiety, etc.


This excessive daytime sleepiness medication is sold by the name Nuvigil. It is another FDA approved vigilance promoting medicine used for excessive daytime sleepiness treatment.

Along with improving the wakefulness in excessive daytime sleepiness patients, it also helps in treating excessive sleepiness caused due to narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea, and shift work disorder. It is also treating ADHD, depression, etc. Using this medication also shows side effects like headache, nausea, and troubled sleep.

Sodium Oxybate

This excessive daytime sleepiness medication is sold by the name Xyrem and Alcover. It is the sodium salt of gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid. Actually, mechanism behind the working of Sodium Oxybate in treating EDS is still unknown. But it effectively improves wakefulness in people facing the problem of excessive daytime sleepiness.

It is not only approved by FDA of United States of America, but also approved by Health Canada in treating cataplexy with narcolepsy. This EDS medication is well tolerated by many people, but it too shows few side effects like headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting etc.

When you consult the doctor for treating EDS, along with these excessive daytime sleepiness medications, he/she may prescribe few lifestyle changes like maintaining regular sleep schedules, getting good night sleep, avoiding heavy meals or exercise at least 2 hours before sleep, avoid caffeinated drinks, etc.