When you’re feeling sleepy, ask for help to avoid getting behind on your day-to-day responsibilities.

Idiopathic hypersomnia (IH) is a sleep disorder that makes you feel extremely tired, even when you sleep well at night.

With IH, it’s hard to get anything done when you’re exhausted all the time. Daily tasks like laundry, shopping, cooking, and child care may go on the back burner while you try to get some rest.

Your doctor can prescribe medication and lifestyle changes to manage IH symptoms. But even then, you may need help completing your daily to-do list.

Try these tips to stay on top of it all when you’re low on energy.

Trying to do too much at once will burn you out. Try to tackle the most important tasks on your to-do list first. Break up each chore into smaller segments. For example, vacuum one room at a time instead of the whole house.

Don’t forget to build in rest or nap times between each task.

Services like Amazon, Instacart, and FreshDirect will take care of grocery shopping for you. You can order everything from cleaning products to fresh fruits and vegetables and have them delivered straight to your door.

Your local supermarket might offer delivery services, too, or let you place an order for pick up, where they’ll shop for you and bring everything to your car in the parking lot.

Tell your friends and family about IH and how it affects your daily life. Keep a list of people to ask for help, and don’t be afraid to accept assistance when it’s offered.

Be specific with your requests. For example, you might ask, “Can you mow my lawn every other weekend?” or “Can you walk my dog in the mornings?” When more than one person is willing to help, set up a schedule of chores for each person to do.

If you don’t have people in your network who can help, ask your doctor or social worker what services are available in your area. You might qualify for a meal delivery service, free transportation, or a home health aide.

These everyday chores can be difficult, and sometimes dangerous, when you have IH. Falling asleep while food is cooking on the stove or as you’re driving your kids home from school are real risks. Hiring a housekeeper, cook, and nanny or babysitter to help with these tasks can take the stress off you and keep everyone safe.

If you can’t afford to hire help, ask family or friends for assistance. You might get someone to make a few big meals like casseroles and stews that you can freeze and reheat. If you don’t have anyone to cook for you, consider subscribing to a meal delivery service.

IH can make it more challenging to go to school or to work a 9-to-5 job. You can ask for accommodations to help with school or work.

Accommodations for IH might include:

  • a later start time
  • shorter days
  • time to take naps
  • the ability to work or take classes from home
  • more time to finish projects, homework, or tests

Service dogs aren’t just for people who are visually impaired. They can help with a wide variety of conditions, including IH. A service dog can:

  • open and close doors for you
  • retrieve items like your socks or phone
  • wake you up if your alarm doesn’t go off or you fall asleep in public
  • get you to a safe place if you start to doze off somewhere unsafe

To get a service dog or another type of service animal, you’ll need a note from your doctor stating you have a disability that requires assistance from a service animal.

Keep in mind that the cost for a fully trained service dog can range from $10,000 to $30,000. Health insurance won’t pay for service animals, but organizations like Assistance Dogs International, Planet Dog Foundation, and Paws with a Cause can help cover the cost.

Sleepiness can be a hazard when you drive. Having IH puts you at increased risk for accidents.

Instead of driving yourself, ask for rides or use a rideshare service like Lyft or Uber. You might also check with your town or state government to see if you qualify for free transportation services.

Even something as simple as putting your clothes in the washer and dryer can take a toll when you’re exhausted. Ask whether any local cleaners offer pick-up and delivery laundry service. They’ll pick up, wash and dry your clothes, and return them to you — sometimes within the same day.

Living with a condition that makes you excessively sleepy can affect every part of your daily life. With IH, tasks that were once easy for you, like grocery shopping, cooking, and doing laundry, can suddenly seem impossible.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Lean on family, friends, and neighbors. Consider hiring help, or look into services in your community to make your day-to-day life a little easier and give you more time to rest.