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Narcolepsy (cont.)

Outlook for Narcolepsy

Problems in children with narcolepsy include poor school performance, social impairment, ridicule from peers, and dysfunction in other activities of normal childhood development.

Adults often perceive narcoleptic symptoms as embarrassing, and social isolation may result.

  • They may encounter interpersonal stress in relationships, sexual dysfunction, and difficulty working because of the condition itself or its treatment.
  • They may experience job impairment from sleep attacks, memory problems, cataplexy, interpersonal problems, and personality changes. These symptoms may lead coworkers to perceive them as "lazy."
  • Persons with narcolepsy are sometimes falsely suspected of illegal drug use.
  • Persons who are taking stimulant medications should inform their employers, because they may test positive for amphetamines on screening drug tests.
  • Persons with narcolepsy are at an increased risk for automobile accidents.
  • Left untreated, narcolepsy may be psychosocially devastating. However, with proper management and treatment, persons with narcolepsy usually lead meaningful and productive personal and professional lives.

Support Groups and Counseling for Narcolepsy

If a person is diagnosed with narcolepsy, he or she can join a support group. By becoming a member of a support group, one gets emotional support from people who are having similar problems. It will alleviate isolation and the feeling that he or she is the only one with the condition.

The Narcolepsy Network can help locate a support group in one's area.

Narcolepsy Network Inc.
National Office
10921 Reed Hartman Hwy
Cincinnati, OH 45242
Tel: (513) 891-3522
Fax: (513) 891-3836
Email: [email protected]

Medically reviewed by Joseph Carcione, DO; American board of Psychiatry and Neurology


"Clinical features and diagnosis of narcolepsy in adults"

Last Reviewed 11/20/2017
Medical Author:

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