Narcolepsy has no cure. However, medicines, lifestyle changes, and other therapies can relieve many of its symptoms. Treatment for Narcolepsy is based on the type of symptoms you have and how severe they are.
The goal is to decrease EDS and reduce occurrences of cataplexy using minimal medication. In the past, EDS and cataplexy had to be treated separately. In 2002, a new drug, Xyrem (sodium oxybate), was approved for the safe and effective treatment of cataplexy. In 2005, Xyrem was also approved to treat EDS associated with narcolepsy. Xyrem is the only medication that treats all major symptoms of narcolepsy.
Traditionally, central nervous system stimulants (i.e., Ritalin, Dexedrine, etc.) have been used for EDS. In 1999, Provigil (Modafinil) was the first stimulant approved for treatment of EDS associated with Narcolepsy. Nuvigil, a longer-acting formulation of modafinil, is also approved by the FDA. Tricyclic antidepressants (i.e., Vivactil, Tofranil, etc.) and serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have traditionally been used for treatment of cataplexy and other REM symptoms. Antidepressants Effexor (an SSNRI), and Strattera (an SNRI), are showing excellent results in alleviating cataplexy and reducing other REM symptoms.