A good night's sleep is essential to your health
Feeling tired – or even feeling exhausted after a busy week – is something we all know, but sleep deprivation is nothing to snooze about. It can even indicate an underlying medical issue. If you snore heavily, can't get a good night's sleep, experience sleepiness during waking hours, or have insomnia that persists for more than two weeks, you may have a sleep disorder. If you are tired of being tired, rest assured that the Sleep Lab at Anna Jaques can bring sweet dreams back to our patients in the Greater Newburyport area.
Our staff at the Sleep Diagnostics Laboratory is expert at detecting and treating sleep problems. Our lab is equipped with the latest technology for monitoring sleep patterns and evaluating sleep disorders. Working with board certified physicians, the lab is prepared to handle almost every type of sleep disorder. We will locate the source of the problem, treat it and put it to rest...permanently.
The first step is to consult your physician to find out if you should be tested for a sleep disorder.
What is a sleep disorder?
A sleep disorder is a disruptive pattern of sleep that prevents people from getting the rest and quality of sleep they need. Waking after seven to eight hours of sleep and feeling unrefreshed could be a sign of poor quality sleep. The quality and quantity of sleep is vitally important to our health and well-being. If not treated, your sleep disorder could lead to more serious medical conditions such as heart attack or stroke.
Common sleep disorders
Insomnia is trouble falling or staying asleep, something we all have at some point. If it takes you more than 30 minutes on a regular basis to fall asleep, or if you wake in the middle of the night and remain awake for 30 minutes or more, you may have insomnia. It can even cause you to wake up too early in the morning.
Sleep apnea and snoring
Sleep apnea causes you to stop breathing periodically during sleep. It can be a very serious problem if not treated and is one of the most serious sleep problems. Snoring is caused by an obstruction of the nasal airways. Intense snoring can be a symptom of sleep apnea.
This is a neurological disorder that causes one to fall asleep uncontrollably throughout the day.
Periodic limb movement disorder (PLMD)
Often known as PLM Syndrome, this disorder causes leg or arm jerks during sleep. It disturbs your sleep but you may not even be aware of it.
Restless leg syndrome (RLS)
Restless legs syndrome is a condition that causes an intense, often irresistible urge to move the legs because of uncomfortable and sometimes painful sensations. The sensation, which usually is felt in the calf area but may be felt anywhere from the thigh to the ankle, is brought on by lying down or sitting for a prolong period of time. One or both legs may be affected, and some people even feel the sensations in their arms.
Your doctor may initially ask you to keep a sleep diary for 1 -2 weeks. This is a record of your sleeping and waking patterns and habits. If your doctor can't tell what your problem is by your sleep diary, he or she may want you to have a sleep study. During the study, you sleep in a room much like a hotel or hospital room. A sleep technician (a person trained in sleep problems) observes you through a video camera and records how you sleep. Sometimes the sleep study can be done in your home.
Once the problem is diagnosed there are a variety of treatments available depending on the type of problem that exists. Some of the treatments include:
- Good sleep habits
- Relaxation techniques
- Air pressure devices (to help you breath)
- Oral (dental) devices
Pentucket Medical Associates - Newburyport