What Is Parasomnia?

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What Is Parasomnia?

What Is Parasomnia?

Posted on Monday, October 26th, 2020 at 3:25 pm    

Parasomnia describes any unusual activity that happens right before you sleep, during sleep, and in the moments between sleep and wakefulness. According to the Sleep Foundation, parasomnia often affects children more than adults, though it can affect people of all ages. Parasomnias can describe a number of unusual sleep anomalies, including sleepwalking, night terrors, sleep paralysis, hallucinations, and bedwetting, just to name a few.

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recognizes three distinct groups of parasomnia: NREM-related, REM-related, and “other.” REM stands for rapid eye movement.

The first group is non-rapid eye movement-related. Non-rapid eye movement sleep constitutes the first 90 or so minutes after you fall asleep. Sleep specialists call this “shallow” sleep. People who experience parasomnias in this stage of sleep will have difficulty remembering the events of their episodes. According to the Sleep Foundation, NREM-related parasomnias include:

  • Confusional arousals
  • Sleepwalking
  • Night or sleep terrors
  • Sexual abnormal behaviors
  • Sleep-related disordered eating habits

The second group is rapid eye movement sleep-related. This REM stage of sleep occurs immediately after the NREM stages of sleep. REM sleep will last about 90 minutes, then your sleep will rotate back to NREM, then REM, and so on. During REM, your eyes move rapidly while closed, breathing accelerates, and heart rate and blood pressure will increase. Parasomnias of REM sleep include:

  • Recurring sleep paralysis
  • REM sleep behavior disorder (RSBD)
  • Nightmare disorder

The final group is simply called “other,” as it describes parasomnias that happen between sleeping and wakefulness. They might include:

  • Bedwetting
  • Hallucinations that persist for several minutes after the person awakes
  • “Exploding head syndrome,” when a person hears a loud noise like an explosion in their head and may see a bright light upon waking, though it is imagined

If you are experiencing any of the events listed above, it is important that you make an appointment with your doctor or a sleep specialist. Parasomnias could be signs of an underlying health issue, such as anxiety, PTSD, or a complication with prescribed medicine.

Get a Better Night’s Sleep With Silent Night Therapy

Parasomnias could be a sign of a more serious sleep problem, such as sleep apnea or insomnia. 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 solutions. Call us today at (631) 983-2463 or schedule a free consultation online.


Foods That Help You Sleep

Posted on Tuesday, August 25th, 2020 at 12:26 am    

Foods for sleep

Following a regular bedtime routine is one of the most beneficial things you can do for a good night’s sleep. You might take a shower, brush your teeth, and settle in with a good book before falling asleep. But did you know that some foods are better to eat before bedtime than others? Specialists say that eating certain foods before you go to sleep can improve your chances of getting a good night’s rest.

According to Healthline, there are nine foods and beverages that specialists have identified as the most beneficial to eat or drink before bed. They are:

  • Almonds
  • Turkey
  • Chamomile tea
  • Kiwis
  • Cherry juice
  • Walnuts
  • Fatty fish
  • White rice
  • Passionflower tea

Some experts also believe that warm milk, bananas, cottage cheese, and yogurt help you get a good night’s sleep. Consuming these foods and beverages two to three hours before you go to sleep is recommended because it’s less likely to cause acid reflux or an upset stomach.

Many of the items listed above are good sources of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep, and serotonin, a chemical produced in the brain that regulates your sleep cycle. Cherry juice and almonds both contain high levels of melatonin, which in turn makes the person who consumes them sleepier sooner. Additionally, some research suggests that high amounts of magnesium in one’s diet can help promote sounder sleep. Walnuts, bananas, and almonds are all rich in magnesium.

Get Help at Silent Night Therapy

If you or your partner have difficulties falling asleep at night, this could be an indication of a more serious underlying health issue, such as sleep apnea or insomnia. Oftentimes, insomnia is caused by factors that are easy to address, but if you are suffering from sleep apnea, more rigorous treatment may be recommended. The specialists at Silent Night Therapy are here to help you through the process.

At Silent Night Therapy, our offices are now open. We understand that our clients are concerned about staying safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, and our staff has put in place comprehensive safety protocols to ensure the health of each of our clients. In addition, leaving the safety and comfort of your home is not required to see whether you have sleep apnea – we would be happy to mail an at-home kit right to your home. Contact us at (631) 983-2463 or fill out a contact form on our website today to learn more about our services.


What Happens When Your Body Doesn’t Get Enough Sleep

Posted on Wednesday, May 27th, 2020 at 2:31 pm    

Getting enough sleep each night is just as critical to our bodies’ functions as eating fruits and vegetables and drinking plenty of water. But people who suffer from sleep apnea often get less than the recommended 6 to 9 hours of sleep. This can lead to a myriad of health problems, ranging from increased risk of heart disease to lowered sex drive.

About 1 in 3 American adults suffer from a lack of sleep, according to a study from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Many of these people suffer from untreated sleep apnea, a condition that repeatedly impedes your breathing during the night. Symptoms of sleep apnea include excessive snoring, daytime fatigue, dry mouth, headaches, and insomnia.

The Impact of Sleep Deprivation

One of the biggest health threats of sleep deprivation is to the cardiovascular system. Studies have found a link between sleep deprivation and a higher risk of developing heart disease, increased heart rate, and high blood pressure. Coronary heart disease and increased risk of strokes can also be consequences linked to getting less sleep.

Additionally, people who get less sleep at night tend to struggle more with cognitive tasks. This could manifest at work when replying to emails or typing up a presentation, or even having conversations with clients and coworkers. According to an article from Healthline, decision-making, reasoning, and problem-solving worsened when sleep study participants missed a night of sleep.

Other negative consequences of sleep deprivation are:

  • Weight gain
  • Lower libido
  • Increased forgetfulness
  • Increased risk of cancer
  • Lowered immune system
  • Higher risk of developing diabetes

Luckily, the sleep experts at Silent Night Therapy are here to help you. Even during the coronavirus pandemic, our dedicated team is offering at-home sleep studies. We will evaluate the results and offer a consultation via phone or video call.

Contact a Sleep Apnea Specialist at Silent Night Therapy

If you are suffering from sleep apnea and want to do an at-home sleep test, the experts at Silent Night Therapy are ready to help. We are taking a safe and proactive approach toward the COVID-19 outbreak. We are still available during this time and can work toward getting the vital care you need through virtual consultations and at home-sleep study tests. Please call us at 631-983-2463 to schedule your appointment today.


Stress and Sleeping

Posted on Thursday, April 16th, 2020 at 3:07 pm    

The amount of sleep you get each night has a significant impact on your stress levels during the day. According to the American Psychological Association, the average American adult only gets 6.7 hours of sleep per night, which is considerably below the recommended 8-9 hours. But one APA study from 2013 argues that, if Americans got more sleep each night, they would be healthier and happier.

The Need for Sleep

When we sleep, our bodies have a chance to recover and repair themselves for the next day. According to the APA, this is when our brains consolidate our memories, and when our muscles can finally relax and repair. When we don’t get enough sleep, we might lash out at loved ones, fall asleep at the wheel, or be less productive at work. In some cases, people who do not get enough sleep are at a higher risk of developing health complications such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

Manage Your Stress

When we are stressed out during the day, it is often hard to fall asleep at night. You may lie awake in bed for 45 minutes or an hour before falling asleep, which in turn shortens your period of sleep, leaving you more irritated the next day. It’s a vicious cycle.

One way to break the cycle is to manage your stress during the day. Not only will stress management leave you feeling healthier and happier, but it will also let you fall asleep more easily. Some ways to reduce stress are:

  • Learn how to say no when you already have too much on your plate. This could be at a job or in your social life. If you explain to your friends or supervisors that you’re already too busy, they should understand and respect that.
  • Set aside an hour each day for a relaxing activity. This could be yoga, pilates, baking, reading, playing with your dog, or writing in a journal. Try to stay away from screens to give your eyes and your brain a break.
  • Ask for help. If you find that you are constantly overwhelmed with the stresses in your life, you might want to seek out help from a therapist or counselor.

It can be hard to prioritize self-care but remember that you not only deserve sleep and stress relief, but your health also depends on them.

Contact Silent Night Therapy

If your daytime stress is getting in the way of your sleep schedule, or if poor sleep leaves you feeling irritable and groggy, you might want to get in touch with a sleep therapist. At Silent Night Therapy, our specialists can help come up with a plan to get you a better night’s sleep. Whether you are suffering from sleep apnea or another sleep disorder, we are ready to assist you. Please call our number at 631-983-2463 to schedule your appointment today.