Sleep Disorders Overview

Sleep disorders are a group of illnesses resulting in the inability to sleep regularly or adequately. They are often caused by other health problems or even stress. There is an increasing number of sleep problems in Nigeria seen in most clinics.

Sleep-related illnesses have been associated with the hectic schedules related to urbanisation and its often attendant busy schedules. When these sleep problems occur regularly, they interfere with daily life.


In Nigeria, up to 69 of every 100 people have sleep disorders. These range from conditions causing difficulty initiating sleep or excessive sleepiness during the day. 

Some common sleep disorders in Nigeria are-

  1. Insomnia- seen in as high as 27 in every 100 people
  2. Obstructive Sleep Apnea- 33 out of every 100 people
  3. Parasomnias- like sleep-walking and sleep-talking.
  4. Restless leg syndrome
  5. Narcolepsy


Some common signs of disorders of sleep are

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Difficulty falling asleep
  • Disruptive snoring
  • Choking during sleep etc

For other signs, check- Do I have a sleep disorder?.


Often, a sleep study is performed to assist in the diagnosis of sleep disorders. 


Treatment of sleep disorders follows a wide range of modalities, from education on sleep hygiene, cognitive behavioural therapy, medications, prescription of sleep assistive devices etc.


Olanisun Adewole. Pattern of Sleep Disorders among Patients in a Nigerian Family Practice Population. Ann Med Health Sci Res. 2017; 7: 23-31.