What Happens if You Don’t Treat Sleep Apnea

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What Happens if You Don’t Treat Sleep Apnea

What Happens if You Don’t Treat Sleep Apnea

Posted on Tuesday, May 12th, 2020 at 6:17 pm    

Nearly 30 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that occurs when the upper airway repeatedly collapses during sleep, causing the patient to wake up feeling groggy in the morning. This is because the person suffering from sleep apnea stops breathing multiple times during the night.

If left untreated, sleep apnea could cause a slew of other health problems, including:

  • Heart disease
  • Heart failure
  • Stroke
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Resistant hypertension
  • High blood pressure
  • Atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat)

Signs of Sleep Apnea

Some people may be at higher risk of developing sleep apnea, even though it can affect people of all ages. People who are older, have excess body weight, smoke, or have a family history of sleep apnea are more at risk of developing this disorder. Recognizing the signs of sleep apnea is the first step to seeking treatment.

Some signs to look out for are:

  • Loud snoring
  • Difficulty staying asleep
  • Daytime fatigue or drowsiness
  • Headaches upon waking up
  • Moments where you stop breathing during sleep
  • Waking up with a dry mouth
  • Irritability

Treatment for Your Condition

If you believe you might be suffering from sleep apnea, please do not wait to contact us to get treatment. Our office is still ready to help patients in spite of the pandemic through remote consultations and at-home sleep studies. The team at Silent Night Therapy understands the safety concerns that our patients and prospective patients have regarding the spread of the coronavirus. In response, we are excited to offer remote sleep consultations and at-home sleep testing kits through SNAP Diagnostics Dropship.

SNAP Diagnostics Dropship simply delivers a sanitized at-home sleep testing kit to your home. You simply go about your normal nightly routine before attaching the equipment to yourself. When you are finished with the study, mail the equipment back to the lab for analysis, and an expert from Silent Night Therapy will call you to discuss the results.

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 you. 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.


Sleep Deprivation and the Immune System

Posted on Monday, February 17th, 2020 at 6:43 pm    

Getting enough sleep at night isn’t only important for feeling productive and clear-headed during the day. There is also a link between sleep and your immune system, according to Diwakar Balachandran, MD, director of the Sleep Center at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Balachandran says studies show that sleep deprivation can make your T-cell count lower, thus making you more susceptible to catching a cold or the flu. 

Additionally, according to John Park, MD, a pulmonologist who specializes in sleep medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., sleep deprivation also has negative impacts on your immune system in terms of vaccinations. Park says that if you are sleep deprived when getting a flu shot, for example, it takes your body longer to react to the vaccination. Your body produces fewer antibodies in reaction to vaccines when sleep-deprived, so you are still susceptible to getting the flu even if you got vaccinated. 

Lack of sleep also puts you at risk of severe adverse health conditions like:

  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Heart attack
  • Irregular heartbeat

How to get more sleep:

  • Doctors recommend abstaining from drinking caffeine in the afternoon and from consuming alcohol within six hours of your bedtime. 
  • Avoid taking naps during the day unless they are extremely short power naps. 
  • It also helps to stick to a normal sleep schedule and bedtime routine, such as reading a book or drinking herbal tea before bed. 
  • Keep your bedroom cool and dark; it should be between 60-67 degrees and free of all light. 

However, if you suffer from insomnia or sleep apnea, you may need professional assistance to find a solution to your sleep problems. 

Contact the OSA Team at Silent Night Therapy 

If you’re struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, we understand that this gets in the way or you living your best life. The sleep experts at Silent Night Therapy are here for you. Meet with us for a consultation so we can get to the source of your sleep problems and help you find a solution so you can get a good night’s sleep. Call us at (631) 983-2463 today.

 


Why an at-home sleep study is often better than in a lab

Posted on Monday, February 3rd, 2020 at 8:10 pm    

If you think you might suffer from sleep apnea, you may be considering participating in a sleep study to determine what your next treatment steps should be. The thought of sleeping in a lab is unsettling for many people, so they opt to never even do a sleep study. But recently, at-home sleep studies have become more common, making it easier for people to determine whether they have sleep apnea. 

What happens during an in-lab sleep study?

If you choose to go to a sleep center to conduct your sleep test, technicians will attach a number of tools to your body to measure different aspects of your sleep. Technicians will attach: 

  • Electrodes to your face and scalp to send electric messages to the measuring equipment
  • A belt around your chest to measure breathing
  • A sound probe to detect snoring
  • Pressure transducers on your nasal region to measure airflow
  • An oximeter probe on your finger to measure blood flow

Wearing this much technology can make it difficult to fall asleep when it is already uncomfortable to be doing your nightly routine in an unfamiliar environment. 

What happens during an in-home sleep study?

If you choose to do your sleep test at home, you can simply pick up your test at the office and return it when the test is over. Instead of the five measuring tools used in the lab, an in-home study will only use a belt, an oximeter probe, and an oral-nasal cannula. You simply do your normal nightly routine and attach all the equipment right before you go to bed. Doing it in the comfort of your own bed will make it easier for you to fall asleep, and might yield more accurate results because your sleep is more disrupted in a lab. Home studies are typically just as accurate as lab studies but are much more convenient and comfortable for the person being tested. 

Contact the OSA Team at Silent Night Therapy

If you have questions about sleep studies or suspect you might have sleep apnea, contact the team at Silent Night Therapy. You deserve a good night’s sleep, and we’ll be here to find the solution that will help you get it. Schedule your consultation with us by calling (631) 983-2463 or by filling out a contact form today.

 


How to Snooze Your Way to Better Health

Posted on Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 at 10:16 am    

Gym memberships surge every January as people recommit themselves to improving their health. While being physically active and eating well are essential strategies to stay in shape, improving your health is just as much about rest as it is about exertion. Pursuing a healthy lifestyle without reassessing your sleep habits will hurt your chances of achieving your ultimate fitness goals. At Silent Night Therapy, we want to encourage our friends and neighbors to get healthy in the new year by committing themselves to better sleep habits.

The Issue

We live in a society where people want to see results. Many people set their fitness goals around an idea of how they hope to look. Often when people make resolutions, they are looking to push themselves, try harder, and do more. We see that over and over again that effort is rewarded. Setting a goal to get better rest challenges us to learn when to stop rather than continue pushing.

Committing to better rest involves learning to establish healthy boundaries, to learn when your body needs rest and recovery and to make sure that you honor that. While better sleep may feel like a counter-intuitive way to reach a healthier weight, the reality is that the quality and amount of sleep that you get impacts the food you crave, your mood, as well as your mental and physical agility.

Quick Tips 

Technology banMake the time that you sleep a haven from the digital demands of the rest of your day. Reclaim your time by getting into a more grounded routine.  

RoutineFor those looking to improve their sleep habits, consider establishing a concrete nightly routine. This may involve some light stretching, drinking tea, or reading a book. Being consistent with your routine will help you develop a steady rhythm for winding down.

Dark environmentWherever you are sleeping should be dark. Our bodies naturally respond to light, even when we are sleeping. If you have a television on in your room, even if it is muted, the light will affect the quality of your sleep.

The Good News

In spite of the struggles that we may have with sleep, whether it is insomnia, chronic stress, or any other issue, our bodies have a natural rhythm that can always be relearned. We have helped plenty of people who had lost hope that they’d be able to get back into a healthy sleeping habit. This year, pursue your health goals with the understanding that you will be able to achieve more if you rest more.

Get in touch with a member of our Silent Night Therapy team at (631) 983-2463 to find out if sleep apnea is impacting your quality of sleep, and how our services could help.