Dr. Rosemary Leonard answers a question on someone who falls asleep at any time in the company of Emma Howard.
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Emma Howard: Hello we are answering questions on health and medical problems. I am joined by Dr. Rosemary Leonard, hello. Rosemary Leonard: Hello. Emma Howard: Rosemary, quiet an unusual question here about somebody who has recently lost their job because they couldn't stop themselves from falling asleep sounds really worrying this person written and said it can happen at any time of the day sometimes I will nod off for a few moments and other times I will pause out for over an hour, I am really worried what can I do to make this stop. Rosemary Leonard: Well there is a medical condition called narcolepsy where you can fall asleep during the day at any time but its actually very, very rare indeed. Its diagnosed by having an EEG in general which is a way of measuring the electrical activity in the brain and you get specific patterns with this, but much more commonly this type of problem is due to something else going on in their lives. Now the commonest thing is that they are not sleeping well during the night time which means they go day time sleepiness so the first thing to do is try and get a good night sleep and ironically if you sleep during the day you are then less likely to get a good night sleep so you have to keep your self awake during the day. Emma Howard: Because so many hours that we are going to do. Rosemary Leonard: Yeah, in particularly in elderly we know that if I have day time naps they don't tend to sleep so well at night time and then they come in saying I cant sleep at night time and actually what you need to do is stop the day time sleeping. The other thing this can be is a side effect of some medications under depression say SSRI antidepressants can cause sleepiness during the day and some of the medications can do is always worth reading the inside if you are taking any medications to see if it has possible side effect. Emma Howard: And you said SSRI what's that. Rosemary Leonard: They are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, the most famous of the most Prozac but they used quiet widely for treating anxiety and depression and they can make you suddenly feel sleepy during the day. Emma Howard: Because they depress lots of emotions at the same time. Rosemary Leonard: Yes, yes but other medication can do it as well sleepiness or fatigue is quite a common side effect. So it's always worth if anyone is feeling sleepy in their own medication you should always read the leaflet and check with either that pharmacy store or the doctor. Emma Howard: And go back and the check list to run through to make sure. Rosemary Leonard: Yeah, yes. Emma Howard: Good advice Rosemary thank you and if you have a similar problem we hope we might have given you some help but remember its always better to go and see your own doctor for medical advice. Thanks for watching we will be back with more health questions and answers.