Updated at: 25-02-2022 - By: Jane

Excessive drowsiness can be identified by symptoms such as unrelenting snoring, heavy eyelids, and a strong desire to nod off during the day. Struggling to stay awake can have a negative impact on academic and professional performance, interpersonal relationships, and even one’s ability to drive safely.

Why am I constantly sleepy? is a common question for those who suffer from constant drowsiness

Excessive drowsiness can be caused by a variety of factors, the most frequent of which are sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and insomnia. Daytime sleepiness can be caused by a variety of factors, including depression and other mental health issues, drugs, and medical diseases that impact the brain and body.

As a preliminary step, it’s important to identify excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS). Working with a doctor to find the root problem and improve your sleep habits can have a positive impact on your productivity, happiness, and general well-being..

What Is Excessive Daytime Sleepiness?

To put it another way, excessive daytime sleepiness is a problem with staying awake or alert1. EDS and fatigue2 may overlap, according to some doctors, but the two disorders are not mutually exclusive.

Recent studies indicate that excessive drowsiness is a major issue. According to the National Sleep Foundation’s Sleep in America Poll for 2020, about half of all Americans say they feel sleepy three to seven days a week. Forty percent of people in their 20s and 30s reported that being sleepy at least occasionally interferes with their everyday tasks.

Hypersomnia, a term used to describe sleep disorders, is another name for EDS. A more general definition of hypersomnolence encompasses conditions such excessive nighttime sleepiness that are separate from drowsyness in the daytime or when alertness is essential.


What Are the Causes of Excessive Daytime Sleepiness?

Oversleeping during the day isn’t a disease in and of itself; rather, it’s a sign of something else going on.

Sleepiness Caused by Sleep Deprivation

The most prevalent cause of extreme drowsiness is regarded to be a lack of sleep. 3. Insufficient sleep can be temporary or chronic, and can be caused by a variety of sleep problems as well as more serious medical issues. 4:

  • Failure to Prioritize Sleep: Choosing to stay up late to watch a series or wake up early to go to the gym are examples of how sleep can get bumped down the list of priorities and crowded out of a busy schedule. This might lead to tiredness the next day, and it can become a chronic issue. Insufficient sleep syndrome5 refers to a long-term absence of sleep as a result of these choices.
  • There are several reasons why it’s difficult to get or remain asleep, and insomnia is one of them. Insomnia is typically a symptom of other sleep disorders that cause excessive tiredness, such as narcolepsy.
  • Occurrences of short pauses in breathing while sleeping are symptoms of a sleep disorder known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). Typically, it causes daytime drowsiness and may affect as many as 20% of adults6. Although less common, central sleep apnea (CSA) can also induce sleep disturbances.
  • Those who suffer from Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) have an intense desire to move their legs, and this illness is known to impair sleep both in terms of total sleep time and quality.
  • Shortness and fragmentation of sleep might be the result of irregular sleep patterns that are not in sync with the local day-night cycle. Jet lag and shift workers’ sleep issues are two examples.
  • The quality of your sleep is just as important as the quantity when it comes to sleep deficiency. Lack of REM or deep sleep can be a problem for people who have trouble sleeping comfortably through their cycles. Even when they get the required amount of sleep, they may not wake up feeling rested.
  • People who have arthritis, fibromyalgia, or herniated disks may have difficulty sleeping and be more likely to be groggy during the day.
  • As many as one in three older adults and one in five younger adults are affected by nocturia, a disorder that causes the need to get out of bed at night to pee.


Sleepiness Caused by Other Medical and Brain Conditions

Excessive drowsiness can be caused by a variety of factors other than a lack of sleep. During the day, medications, particularly sedatives, can cause drowsiness and confusion. These include antidepressants, pain relievers and antihistamines that are available over the counter.3. It is also possible to experience tiredness as a side effect of medication discontinuation.

Drowsiness is a common symptom of mental health issues. Nearly 80 percent of patients with serious depression9 are thought to suffer from excessive daytime sleepiness. Depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) are all connected with sleep disorders that can lead to excessive drowsiness.

Excessive daytime sleepiness can result from a variety of neurological problems. Neurological conditions like narcolepsy, in which the brain is unable to correctly control the sleep-wake cycle, are noteworthy examples. One in every 2,000 persons suffers from narcolepsy, which causes them to frequently fall asleep without warning, even when it is not convenient for them to do so.

Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other neurodegenerative disorders are associated with difficulty sleeping and daytime sleepiness. Sleep disorders are frequent in those who have suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or a concussion, and brain tumors or lesions can also induce excessive sleepiness. Meningitis13 and encephalitis14 (brain swelling) are two examples of infections that can induce EDS.

As many as 15 million children and adults suffer from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), which causes a wide spectrum of sleep difficulties, including daytime sleepiness. Some 31 percent of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD)18 experience daytime drowsiness, and this problem may remain into adulthood for those with these problems.


Health problems19 other than brain issues can cause daytime drowsiness. Drowsiness can be exacerbated by metabolic disorders such as diabetes and hypothyroidism. Anemia, irregular salt levels in the blood, and electrolyte imbalances are all examples of medical problems that can cause extreme sleepiness.

Getting Relief for Excessive Daytime Sleepiness (EDS)

Most people who suffer from extreme tiredness can find relief. The best course of action for each patient is determined by identifying the underlying cause or variables that contribute to their condition.

EDS can be treated in a variety of ways due to the fact that it can be brought on by a variety of factors, including poor sleep patterns and medical and brain disorders. Identifying and customizing the appropriate treatment plans for each patient is the responsibility of a doctor.


It is possible to enhance sleep quality and quantity if you are suffering from tiredness because of sleep deprivation. CPAP equipment for sleep apnea and cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia are two examples of this type of treatment (CBT-I). If a person’s sleeping patterns and bedroom environment are not conducive to good sleep hygiene, then a number of sleep-focused treatments can assist improve this aspect of their health.

It’s common for treatment to focus on the underlying cause of EDS when it’s linked to another condition. It is possible to urge patients to improve their sleep hygiene in conjunction with other therapies in order to help them incorporate healthy sleep habits into their daily routines.


What medical condition makes you sleep all the time?

What neurological causes excessive sleepiness?

Why do I want to sleep all the time and have no energy?

Why am I so tired when I sleep a lot?

Too much sleep deprivation has been linked to low energy levels, according to recent studies. The body’s circadian rhythms appear to be disrupted if sleep habits are significantly disrupted.

Why am I sleeping 12 hours a day and still tired?

Why do I sleep more than 12 hours a day?

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