The National Sleep Association is celebrating its annual Sleep Awareness Week, March 11 to 17. The theme this year is Begin with Sleep, which highlights the importance of a good night’s sleep for individuals to best achieve their personal, family, and professional goals. Use the hashtag #YourDayBeginsWithSleep on social media to be part of the conversation and to help spread the word.
The experts at Mt. Hood ENT & Allergy are excited to part of this week-long event, helping to inform others about how sleep affects their health, well-being and safety.
The Importance of Sleep
Sleep is vital for good health. Experts recommend a minimum of seven to eight hours of sleep per night for most adults. A lack of sleep can affect your:
- Hormone levels
- Work or school performance
Poor sleep can also cause physical, mental, social and emotional problems.
What is a Sleep Disorder?
As your Portland doctor explains it, sleep disorders are conditions that prevent you from sleeping well on a regular basis. They are very common, affecting an estimated 75 percent of Americans on a regular basis. There are more than 100 different types of sleep disorders; the most common are:
- Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)
- Central sleep apnea (CSA)
- Parasomnia (abnormal movements and behavior during sleep)
- Hypersomnia (excessive sleepiness)
- Restless leg syndrome
- Circadian rhythm disorders
Symptoms vary depending on the type of sleep disorder and how severe its impact is. Common symptoms include:
- Difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Lack of concentration
- Memory loss
Sleep apnea is the most common sleep disorder, affecting nearly one in every 15 Americans, is sleep apnea.
It occurs when a person experiences one or more pauses in breathing, or shallow breathing, while asleep. These pauses can last a few seconds to a few minutes. Generally, breathing begins again and is sometimes accompanied by snorting or choking.
How are Sleep Disorders Treated?
In order to confirm what is causing your sleeping problems, your Portland ENT will order a sleep study. Also called a polysomnography, a sleep study can be conducted in a sleep lab or in the comfort of your own home. During this study, your brain waves, blood oxygen levels, heart rate, sleep stages, movement and breathing rate are measured.
Once a diagnosis has been made, your Portland ENT will develop an individualized treatment plan. This plan will usually involve a combination of medications and lifestyle changes. Surgery may be needed for those with certain breathing-related disorders.
For more information about the importance of sleep or to schedule an appointment, contact your Portland ENT today.