Posted on Monday, September 6th, 2021 at 11:39 pm
Most people look forward to sleeping in on Saturday after finishing a long and exhausting week of work. You might think you can “catch up” on the sleep you didn’t get earlier in the week by sleeping in on the weekends. However, this need to sleep for longer could indicate a serious problem. If you don’t feel rested after getting the recommended number of hours of sleep, it might be because you’re experiencing interrupted sleep due to a sleep-related disorder, such as sleep apnea.
Research has shown that maintaining a consistent and deep sleep state every night improves heart health, cognitive functioning, and a range of other benefits. Unfortunately, most people admit that they don’t get the shut-eye they need to function at full physical and mental capacity. Additionally, some don’t follow a regular schedule, meaning they don’t go to bed and wake up at the same time each day. This can throw off your circadian rhythm, which is the body’s internal clock that determines when a person feels alert or tired.
Signs You’re Not Getting the Sleep You Need
Your body will tell you if you don’t get a good night’s sleep. The most common signs include:
- Bags, dark circles, and puffy eyes
- Weight gain
- Craving unhealthy foods
- Increased caffeine intake
- New or worsening depression
- Trouble with memory and concentration
- Waking up with a dry mouth, headache, or sore throat
- Compromised immune system
If you regularly suffer from these symptoms, there are some easy solutions that could help. Create a schedule, so you go to bed at the same time every night and wake up to an alarm at the same time every morning. Make sure it’s completely dark in your bedroom, so your brain doesn’t confuse daylight with your alarm clock or a streetlight outside.
If necessary, buy blackout curtains for your windows, keep your bedroom door closed, and turn off your phone notifications, so it doesn’t light up in the middle of the night. You might also need to make an appointment with your doctor if at-home remedies don’t seem to help. A lack of sleep can indicate a medical condition, such as sleep apnea.
The Link Between Poor Sleep and Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea is a breathing disorder that causes you to start and stop breathing throughout the night while you’re sleeping. Although several types of sleep apnea exist, the most common is obstructive sleep apnea.
One of the major warning signs that you suffer from this condition is snoring. Other symptoms can include:
- Daytime sleepiness
- Headaches in the morning
- High blood pressure
- Waking up abruptly combined with choking or gasping for air
- Sore throat or dry mouth
- Difficulty concentrating
- Changes in mood
Disrupted breathing while you sleep means your body wakes you up often throughout the night. You might not even realize it’s happening and only find out about this issue from a partner. Constant sleep interruptions mean you’re not getting the rest you need at night, leaving you feeling fatigued during the day. Fortunately, there are treatment options.
Trouble Sleeping? Sleep Apnea Might Be the Culprit
Silent Night Therapy has experience diagnosing and treating sleep-related issues. If you’re waking up feeling sluggish and unrested, sleep apnea could be to blame. Call us today at 631-983-2463 for a free consultation to determine whether you’re suffering from sleep apnea and learn about the available treatment options.
Posted on Monday, August 2nd, 2021 at 3:56 pm
Sleep is an important part of everyone’s life. Your body needs to rest and reset so you can remain focused during the day and prevent a range of health problems. Unfortunately, many people don’t get the recommended hours of sleep because of sleep apnea, insomnia, and other sleep-related conditions.
Even if you get enough hours of sleep but still wake up feeling tired, you might have an underlying condition that prevents your body from reaching a deep enough sleep to recharge your batteries, so you feel energized.
Fortunately, there are solutions you can turn to so you fall asleep quickly and stay asleep throughout the night. Some are natural remedies and lifestyle changes. Others require treatment from a healthcare professional. Diagnosing the cause of your tiredness is crucial to determine the available options and resolve your daytime fatigue.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder affecting around 22 million people in the United States. It causes a person’s breathing to stop and start throughout the night repeatedly. Anything that disrupts your normal breathing can wake you up. Once you’re awake, you might have trouble falling back asleep.
You can make an appointment with your doctor to determine if this is why you’re not sleeping soundly.
Try These Tips for a Better Night’s Sleep
If you’re one of the many people who have insomnia, the way you spend your day could be the culprit. Many people don’t realize the impact their daily activities have on getting a good night’s rest. Making even minor adjustments could drastically change how much sleep you get every night and positively affect your mind and mood.
Sleeping well starts with the right bed. It shouldn’t only be comfortable but should also have the correct firmness to suit your body. Some people need a hard mattress due to back issues. Others prefer a softer bed. Find the mattress that works for you so you don’t toss and turn all night while you try to get comfortable.
You also need a pillow that supports your neck and keeps your spine aligned. There are many pillows on the market that can keep you from waking up with a stiff neck or sore back. Investing in the right one means you can avoid any unnecessary pain at night.
Dark and Quiet Room
One common culprit of a poor night’s sleep is falling asleep while watching tv. You might like having background noise, but the sound and flickering light can interfere with your circadian rhythm. Your body might think it’s time to wake up. Spending time on your computer, phone, or tablet just before bedtime can also prevent your brain from preparing to shut down for the night.
Begin a new nighttime routine by putting your devices away and preparing your body for sleep. Read a boring magazine or book, perform a tedious task, or lie down in bed and focus on your breathing. Whatever you do, make sure it keeps you calm and doesn’t get your heart racing.
Reduce Anxiety and Stress
A lot of people can’t fall asleep because of the daily stressors in their lives. Jobs, families, and other responsibilities can cause your mind to race at night when all you want to do is fall asleep. Practicing different relaxation methods and breathing exercises could help you clear your mind.
Try meditating as part of your bedtime routine or practice controlled breathing by inhaling and exhaling slowly. If you have a busy day ahead of you, put it out of your mind by writing a list of the tasks you need to complete so you’re not thinking about it while you’re trying to fall asleep.
Contact Silent Night Therapy
If you’re suffering from sleep apnea or another sleep-related disorder, do not hesitate to contact Silent Night Therapy. Our team can diagnose your medical condition and provide a customized solution for a complete and better night’s sleep.
Call us at 631-983-2463 for a complimentary consultation.
Posted on Friday, March 12th, 2021 at 4:52 pm
Every year before the Spring Vernal Equinox, the World Sleep Society celebrates World Sleep Day, an event that aims to educate people around the globe about the importance of enjoying consistent, quality sleep. This year marks the event’s 14th anniversary and will be held on Friday, March 19, 2021.
The theme for 2021 is “Regular Sleep, Healthy Future.” The World Sleep Society is focusing, this year, on the many benefits that regular sleep offers. Getting a full night’s rest positively impacts our health, mood, and overall quality of life and may have secondary benefits, such as helping us achieve our academic and professional goals.
Sleep is essential for healthy daily living, but, unfortunately, many people either struggle to get the sleep they need, or they don’t make sleep a priority in their schedules. Recognizing this, 14 years ago, the founders of the World Sleep Society decided to create a space for healthcare providers to work together to help prevent sleep disorders and to shine a light on the importance of sleep.
This year, Regular Sleep, Healthy Future’s primary focus is getting at the heart of self-care, as it relates to sleep. The year 2020 was one of the most challenging years in recent memory. Even with all that divides humanity, getting enough sleep is certainly something everyone can agree on. Getting quality sleep, however, sometimes requires getting a bit of help from the experts.
What Are Sleep Disorders?
Sleep disorders can be caused by a variety of factors, from health problems to stress in your daily life. Sleep disorders can affect your alertness, focus, memory, and your health. Symptoms of a sleep disorder may include excessive moving while sleeping, feeling sleepy throughout the day, or even experiencing abnormal breathing patterns.
Some of the most common sleep disorders are:
- Insomnia – The struggle to begin sleeping and/or sleep for long durations.
- Narcolepsy – Affects the brain’s ability to determine the difference between being awake and being asleep. It shows up as chronic daytime sleepiness and can disrupt executive functioning throughout the day.
- Restless Leg Syndrome – A sensation of discomfort, often described as twitching or having the need to move one’s legs while resting and sleeping.
- Sleep Apnea – A condition where breathing is interrupted and long lapses occur between breaths. This limits the amount of oxygen you receive during the night and the quality of your rest, which can lead to significant health problems.
How Can I Get My Best Night’s Sleep?
Following are a few steps sleep professionals recommend to improve your sleep routine and overall quality of sleep:
- Use your bed only for sleep. Save work for the office and other recreation for the rest of the house.
- Avoid alcohol four hours before bed.
- Have a set bedtime routine with consistently scheduled bedtimes and wake-up times.
- If you take naps, never go over 45 minutes of sleep during the day.
- Have no caffeine six hours before bed (chocolate, tea, coffee, etc.).
- Cut out overly sweet, spicy, or rich foods four hours before bedtime.
- Exercise as much as possible during the day but schedule it several hours before going to bed.
- Make sure your bed and the climate in your bedroom are as comfortable as possible and have good ventilation.
- Mute all distracting noise and limit light as much as possible. White noise machines and blackout curtains are good options.
How Do I Participate in World Sleep Day?
You can participate in the event by:
- Creating an exciting event for others to attend
- Getting the word out to your local community and media outlets
- Delivering informational hand-outs
- Share #WorldSleepDay on social media
It’s an understatement to say that sleep is vital to our well-being. The benefits of achieving quality sleep are numerous, including improved memory, less inflammation, better breathing, and sharper focus, to name a few.
We cannot wait to have you join us on March 19, 2021, to kick off Regular Sleep, Healthy Future.
Contact Silent Night Therapy Today
Do you have concerns about the quality of your sleep? The sleep professionals at Silent Night Therapy can help. We’ll work closely with you to identify the cause of your sleep trouble, whether it’s sleep apnea, general insomnia, or something else. Contact us today at (631) 983-2463 to schedule your appointment.
Posted on Monday, November 23rd, 2020 at 7:39 pm
If you have trouble falling asleep at night, chances are that you have tried a number of home remedies to solve this. If drinking chamomile tea, reading a book, turning off all of your electronics, and turning on the fan haven’t done the trick, you might consider some light stretching or exercises.
According to Healthline, one 2016 study found that people who practice yoga or tai chi before bed tend to sleep better. This is because these exercises get your mind in touch with your body instead of lingering on the stressors of the day. Practicing mindfulness has been shown to decrease overall stress, leading to a healthier lifestyle in general. And the first step to improving your quality of life is to improve the quality of your sleep.
Keep reading to learn more about which stretches are best to do before bed.
1. The bear hug
Healthline recommends this stretch because it works the muscles of the upper back, which often get strained throughout the day by sitting in a chair or having bad posture. To do this stretch, stand up tall and straight, and inhale as you stretch your arms open. As you exhale, bring your arms together, crossing over your body, giving yourself a hug. Use your hands to intentionally bring your shoulders forward to stretch the upper back muscles. Hold for 30 seconds and then release.
2. Child’s pose
The child’s pose is a great way to get in touch with your body and regulate your breathing. To do this stretch, simply get on your knees and lean back on your heels. Lean forward, keeping your legs tucked underneath your body and your arms outstretched. Stay in this pose for about five minutes.
3. Legs-up-the-wall pose
This pose is easy to do and helps release tension in your neck, back, and shoulders. Simply lay on your back and swing your legs up so that they are resting against the wall. You can adjust your distance from the wall depending on your comfort. Stay in this pose for about 10 minutes.
Make an Appointment With Silent Night Therapy
If you have tried every home remedy for getting a better night’s sleep but are still having trouble with your sleep habits, it might be time to call Silent Night Therapy. Our sleep specialists can help diagnose any sleep disorder you may have and find a solution that works for you. We can help treat sleep apnea, breathing problems, and snoring, among other concerns. Call us today at (631) 983-2463 to schedule your free consultation.
Posted on Thursday, October 1st, 2020 at 12:13 am
Teenagers are not known for their healthy sleep schedules. But a global pandemic has heightened stress levels, altered learning environments, and challenged teenagers on a social level, as well. These factors combine to make for unhealthy sleep schedules that could leave your teen awake until the early morning hours and asleep until the afternoon. Not only does this irregular sleep schedule throw off their daily routine, it can have an effect on their overall health.
Experts generally agree that teenagers need around 9 hours of sleep each night to function optimally. However, melatonin, a hormone released by the body to help you fall asleep, isn’t released in teenaged bodies until later in the night. This makes it harder for teens to fall asleep at an earlier hour. With demanding schedules full of classes, after-school programs, sports, music lessons, and homework, teenagers could be up until very late at night getting everything done. Even if a teenager has the chance to get in bed early, their brains may not let them fall asleep for a couple of hours.
When your teenager doesn’t get the recommended amount of sleep each night, this can throw off their routines and even jeopardize their health. Sleep deprivation has been linked to a weakened immune system and higher levels of stress, which could lead to conditions such as depression and heart disease.
Support a Healthy Sleep Routine
During the coronavirus pandemic, it is more important than ever to support your immune system any way you can, including eating healthy foods and getting plenty of sleep.
Experts recommend the following tips to help your teenager get a healthy amount of sleep:
- Do not bring electronics such as phones and laptops into bed at night.
- Get plenty of natural light during the day to reset your circadian rhythm.
- Avoid caffeinated drinks in the afternoon and evening.
- Limit daytime naps to 20 minutes.
- Read a book, drink warm tea, or take a warm shower before bed.
Get a Better Night’s Sleep With Silent Night Therapy
Teenagers need a lot of healthy sleep each night to wake up ready for the next day, and so do adults. If you’re having trouble getting restful sleep and are waking up exhausted, then you might have a sleep disorder. The sleep specialists at Silent Night Therapy can diagnose your problems and find reliable sleep solutions. Call our office today at (631) 983-2463 or schedule your free consultation online.
Posted on Friday, August 28th, 2020 at 12:44 am
Microsleep is exactly what it sounds like: periods of sleep that last only a few seconds. These short bursts of sleep can happen at any time. You could experience microsleep when you’re at work, driving your car, sitting in class, or watching your kids.
It’s not just an innocent nap; it can be a symptom of a serious health problem. According to Healthline, microsleep is usually a side-effect of more troubling sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, insomnia, or narcolepsy. Visiting a sleep specialist can help you determine which, if any, of these sleep disorders is causing your microsleep.
You’re more likely to experience microsleep if you’re sleep-deprived, and millions of us are. Approximately 1 in 5 American adults don’t get enough sleep. There are a number of reasons why you might be sleep-deprived, including:
- Working late nights or overnight shifts
- Being unable to sleep because of stress
- Sleep disorders
Some of the most common warning signs that you might be experiencing microsleep are:
- Sudden and uncontrollable body jerks
- Not being able to remember the last few minutes
- Slow blinking
- Excessive yawning
- Repetitive head dropping
Many of the symptoms of microsleep are similar to what you experience right before falling asleep at a natural and healthy time of day. But microsleep can happen at any time and anywhere. This’s part of what can make microsleep dangerous.
Luckily, there are simple ways to treat microsleep. Making small changes to your daily routine could help you fall asleep more quickly and get a deeper sleep. This could include cutting your caffeine intake a couple of hours before bed, turning off your phone, laptop, and TV earlier, and keeping your room cooler. If these changes don’t make a difference and you still experience periods of extreme tiredness during the day, it might be time to call a sleep expert.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Sleep Expert
Silent Night Therapy is open again and ready to help patients just like you! Schedule your appointment today to discuss any problems you have with sleeping or staying asleep. If you’re experiencing microsleep, you might need treatment for a more serious sleep disorder such as sleep apnea. Consult with one of our team members today to diagnose and solve your problem. Call our office at 631-983-2463 to speak with a sleep specialist.
Posted on Monday, January 20th, 2020 at 7:37 pm
If you suffer from sleep apnea, a condition that causes your breathing to repeatedly stop during sleep, the most obvious health-related drawback is a persistent feeling of tiredness. However, there are a number of other health conditions that may arise if you suffer from sleep apnea or have other sleep-related problems.
Both men and women who suffer from sleep apnea report lower libidos and decreased interest in sex. This is because disturbed sleep often leaves you feeling groggy and irritable all day. A 2002 study from the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism also suggests that men who experience sleep apnea tend to release lower levels of testosterone at night, which could lead to a decreased interest in sex.
If you suffer from sleep apnea or insomnia, you may be at a greater risk of experiencing aging skin quicker than your peers. Fine lines on facial skin, dark circles under the eyes, and dull skin could all possibly be attributed to chronic sleep loss. This is because your body releases more cortisol when it is stressed, such as when you don’t get enough sleep, which breaks down collagen if it’s released in excess. Collagen is the protein in your skin that keeps it looking shiny and healthy. Sleep loss could also decrease your body’s release of human growth hormone, which repairs damages to your skin as you sleep.
“Sharp wave ripples” are the cerebral events responsible for maintaining our memories and keeping them sharp. They also transfer memories to the neocortex, where long-term memories are stored. However, sharp-wave ripple events usually only occur when we are in a deep sleep, so people who suffer from insomnia or sleep apnea may not experience these events as often.
Increased risk of death
According to the Whitehall II Study, conducted by British researchers Michael Marmot and Eric Brunner, people who sleep five hours or less each night are at double the risk of death from all causes, but especially cardiovascular disease.
Need to Get Better Sleep? Call the OSA Experts
If you or a loved one suffer from sleep apnea, contact Dr. Brown and the OSA team to schedule a consultation. We’ll help you find a solution that will have you sleeping soundly in no time. Call us at (631) 983-2463 today.
Posted on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019 at 8:12 pm
Getting a good night’s sleep is critical to your health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 40.6 million, or about 30%, of American adults are sleep deprived, meaning they’re sleeping six hours or less per night. This is a startling statistic because numerous studies conclude that too little sleep is bad for your health.
A 2009 Japanese study published in the academic journal Sleep looked at the sleep patterns of nearly 100,000 subjects aged 40 to 79. Their finding: the ideal amount of sleep is 7 hours per night. Too little sleep and too much sleep was linked to an increase in mortality, the study found.
Here are 7 reasons why sleep is so important:
- Improves productivity and concentration
Getting the optimal amount of sleep – 7-8 hours per night – can give you more energy. A good night’s sleep is important for brain function during the day. This includes concentration, productivity, cognition, and performance. Sleep deprivation negatively affects all of these functions. If you are sleep deprived, you will have a 50% slower response time on simple tasks than someone who is drunk, according to a study by the National Sleep Foundation.
- Keeps your weight in check
Sleep deprivation is linked to weight gain. According to a study published in the journal Obesity, sleep deprivation may increase one’s weight through its effect on appetite, physical activity, and thermoregulation. A study by the Sleep Research Society found an increased risk of obesity in children and adults who are short sleepers.
- Decreases risk of heart disease and stroke
A review of studies published in the European Heart Journalfound that people who are sleep deprived are at a much greater risk of heart disease and stroke then those who sleep 7-8 hours per night.
- Boosts your mood
A healthy amount of sleep can enhance well-being and lead to happiness. On the other hand, inadequate sleep has been linked to depression. According to a study in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, about 90 percent of depressed people complain about the amount and quality of sleep they’re getting. Another study, conducted at the University of Pennsylvania, found that subjects who were limited to 4.5 hours of sleep reported feeling more sad, angry, and stressed. When the subjects switched to a healthier sleep pattern, they reported a drastic improvement in their mood.
- Lessens risk of diabetes
Sleep deprivation is linked to unhealthy blood sugar levels. In fact, lack of sleep can cause prediabetes in healthy adults in less than a week. Furthermore, numerous studies show a strong correlation between inadequate sleep and type 2 diabetes.
- Reduces stress
When you’re sleep deprived, your body goes into a state of stress. Bodily functions are put on high alert, leading to high blood pressure, which, in turn, increases your risk of heart attack and stroke.
- Improves immune function
Not getting enough sleep can adversely affect your immune system, increasing your risk of catching a bad cold or the flu, for instance. A study by the American Medical Association found that those who slept fewer than 7 hours per night were nearly three times more likely to develop a cold than those who slept more than 8 hours.
Are you getting less than the optimum amount of sleep per night? Do you find yourself having trouble falling and staying asleep? If so, Dr. Clifford Brown and the dedicated team at Silent Night Therapy can help. To discuss your options and schedule a sleep test, call us today at (631) 983-2463 or reach out to us on our website.
Posted on Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018 at 2:41 pm
Everyone has trouble sleeping sometimes, even sleep experts and health professionals. When we’re lying awake at night, struggling in vain to fall asleep, we might wish we had a sleep expert there with us to tell us what to do. Luckily, if you have trouble falling asleep, we have put together this list of expert tips for falling asleep.
When people notice that they’ve been lying awake for a long time without falling asleep, stress is a common reaction. Panicking will only make falling asleep harder. If you’ve been laying awake for more than 20 minutes, it’s good to get out of bed and do something calm or boring for awhile, rather than struggling against your mind. After a while, you will likely start to feel tired, and you can return to bed to try again.
2-Hour Writing Rule
If you’re having trouble sleeping because of stress, anxiety, and a racing mind, then journaling can help unload some of these issues. Writing down your thoughts before bed can help you feel like you’re in control and make it easier to fall asleep at night. However, it’s best to journal at least 2 hours before bed, rather than right before. This gives your brain time to relax and think about something else after journaling, rather than bringing everything that is bothering you to the surface right before you try to sleep.
Many people rely on sleep drugs or melatonin supplements to try to fall asleep at night, but these choices can shift your sleep schedule and leave you feeling lethargic the next day. Instead, taking three grams of glycine, an amino acid available over the counter, can give you better quality sleep without the negative side effects. As a bonus, you can take glycine any time of the night, because it doesn’t affect your sleep cycle.
*Important note: Be sure to consult your doctor before taking any over-the-counter medication.
The classic trick for falling asleep is counting sheep, but sleep experts have a more effective approach. You select a random word that helps you relax and focus. Then, you take slow, deep breaths, thinking of the word with each exhale. This meditative process helps to quiet your mind and shut out any thoughts besides that one word, allowing you to relax into sleep.
Even if you’ve had trouble falling asleep the night before, leaving you exhausted during the day, try to avoid taking a nap. Resting during the day disrupts your sleep drive, which makes you less tired once it’s time to go to sleep at night. This creates a vicious cycle that can be difficult to break out of unless you stop napping. To fight exhaustion during the day after a restless night, try exercising or spending some time outside.
If you sleep in the same bed as another person, you may not be sleeping in your ideal conditions. You may be uncomfortable at night, but afraid to move in case you disturb your partner. For a simple solution, buy two sets of sheets. You can then adjust your temperature to your liking and move around without waking your partner.
The Cognitive Shuffle
Another way to relax your mind is to play the Cognitive Shuffle. Select a random letter, then start picturing words that begin with that letter. Go slowly, picturing your words in full before moving on. The theory behind this technique is that you’re signaling to your brain that it’s time to sleep by initiating mind wandering and visualization.
Trouble Sleeping? Contact Us
In some cases, people find that sleep issues may be a symptom of a larger problem, like sleep apnea. If you are having trouble sleeping or getting quality sleep and believe that sleep apnea may be to blame, contact Dr. Brown and the sleep apnea professionals at Silent Night Therapy today at (631) 983-2463.