When you suffer from sleep disorders, the best way to diagnose your problem is through a sleep test. Another name for a sleep study is Polysomnography. The sleep test uses a graph to measure sleep pattern. A sleep study is different from other methods of diagnosis, but it is very effective. Sleep disorders, in general, are different. Sometimes they go undiagnosed because it is hard for you to tell whether or not you have a sleep disorder. It is important for you to know what the symptoms of a sleep disorder are. Just knowing your symptoms will allow you to get tested and get a diagnosed before your health waivers.
When you fall asleep, there are stages or cycles. The cycles are used to help determine at which point most of your problems occur. The first stage of sleep is the non-rapid eye movement stage. Your brain waves slow down, and you start to rest. The next stage is rapid eye movement. The brain waves pick up, and your eyes move again. At this stage, you experience a lot of dreams. Your body goes back and forth between these cycles at night. You may go through these cycles up to six times a night. The rapid eye movement stage increases with each cycle. Sleep disorders disrupt this natural process and put you at risk for not only minor problems but serious health problems if things are not addressed right away.
Sleep disorders are abnormal changes in sleep patterns. There are many different types of sleep disorders. Sleep disorders may not seem like a big deal, but eventually, it can have negative effects on your health. Some common sleep disorders include:
- Insomnia – Trouble falling asleep and staying asleep
- Narcolepsy – Daytime sleepiness that causes you to fall asleep at random moments
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea- the blockage of airflow during sleep
- Parasomnia- Disruptive behavior during sleep that includes sleepwalking, aggressive behavior, and eating- disorders
- Restless Leg Syndrome- Neurological disorder that causes an urge to move your legs.
- There are many other types of sleep disorders, but these are some of the most common types.
- Symptoms of Sleep Disorders
Although there are many different types of sleep disorders, many of them have the same symptoms. One symptom that is the same for all sleep disorders is daytime sleepiness. If you always go to bed late and do not get enough sleep, daytime sleepiness is normal, but if you are getting the right amount sleep nightly, then you could have a problem. Although your mind is sleep, you wake up tired because your body is experiencing changes all through the night. In the case of parasomnia, you move around a lot and do not rest at all. When you have obstructive sleep apnea, your body does not get enough oxygen, and you wake up extremely tired. Narcolepsy affects your whole life and can prevent you from finishing school and performing your duties at work. Sleep is important for our health. It gives our body time for rest and restoration. Over time, the lack of sleep affects heart function and brain function.
You may not think sleep deprivation is that big of a deal but here are a few major health risks you have when you do not have enough sleep.
- Impaired Brain Function
- Memory Problems
- Cognitive Dysfunction
- Risks of Accidents
- Weak Immune System
- Heart Disease
Seeing how sleep deprivation affects your health should make you want to go in for a sleep study if you are showing symptoms.
The Sleep Study
For a sleep study, you have to go to a sleep center. Some studies are done at a hospital. You do not have to stay the whole day, though. Most people are scheduled to come in the evening. You get a nice room to sleep in, and it does not even feel like you are there for a study. Before falling asleep, a worker comes in and puts sensors on you to monitor you during the night. When you fall asleep; your sleep patterns are monitored. Besides sleep patterns, oxygen levels and brain waves are assessed. Once you wake up, they go over your results and can diagnose which sleep disorder you have. Another thing about sleep studies is that they can use them to see how you have progressed in your treatment and if you need an adjustment.
After being diagnosed with a sleep disorder, you may have many different feelings. The good news is treatment can now begin. Treatment can bring great relief, and you should start feeling better instantly. You may not like having to use a CPAP machine, going to therapy, or taking medication, but the result of these things can help you tremendously. If you have been told that you are disruptive during sleep, or you realize you are always tired during the day, you may need a sleep study to help you reach a diagnosis. This one study can improve your health and save your life.
FIND A TOP10MD SLEEP MEDICINE SPECIALIST NEAR YOU
The field of sleep medicine is relatively new, and it’s important to find a sleep doctor with the skills and experience necessary to develop a treatment plan that works for you.
There are hundreds of Sleep Medicine Specialists to choose from; however, not all doctors are created equal. Advanced Sleep Medicine testing, treatments, and therapies take the skill of an experienced Sleep Medicine Specialist. That’s why we’ve selected your city’s best Sleep Medicine Specialists – to make the decision process easier for you and your family.
For your peace of mind, Top10MD Sleep Medicine Specialists’ credentials are validated yearly to verify medical licenses have no serious patient care sanctions, current Board Certifications in their given medical specialty, current DEA & DPS licenses, and malpractice insurance. A Top10MD has at least 5+ years experience or has performed 300+ procedures in their given specialty and a current Patient Satisfaction Score of 8.5 or higher.