North Country Sleep Center
Sleep, once thought to just be a "time-out" from daily life, is now known to be a key part of a healthy lifestyle, by allowing our body and brain to rest and recover from the wear and tear of daily life. Yet, more than 100 million Americans fail to get a good night sleep. Sleep problems can affect not only your quality of life by causing fatigue and sleepiness, but also result in mood problems such as irritability and depression, weight gain, and other health problems such as high blood pressure and increased risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Many factors can influence sleep, such as work and family/social responsibilities, medical illness and psychological problems. In addition, more than 70 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders such as:
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Restless legs syndrome
- Circadian rhythm disorders (problems with synchronization between the internal/circadian clock and the desired or needed sleep schedule such as in shift work, jet lag, delayed sleep phase, and advanced sleep phase disorders)
- Abnormal nighttime behaviors (sleep walking, acting out of dreams, etc)
...which can further affect their sleep. Fortunately, there are treatments for most sleep disorders; however, the first step is recognizing that there is a problem and seeking help.
Symptoms of sleep disorders include:
- Difficulty falling asleep on a regular basis
- Frequent awakenings during the night
- Excessive sleepiness or fatigue during the day
- Sudden uncontrollable sleep attacks during the day
- Loud snoring
- Pauses in breathing during sleep
- Waking up gasping for breath
- Morning headaches
- Frequent leg movements or kicks
- Unpleasant restless feelings in the legs causing the urge to move and usually developing in the evening or at night
- Abnormal behaviors during the night (sleep walking or acting out dreams)
- Frequent need to urinate during the night
If you experience some of these problems, please discuss them with your doctor or call us at North Country Sleep Center for a consultation with one of our sleep specialists.
North Country Sleep Center provides state of the art facilities, staffed by board-certified physicians and other highly trained professionals, to help people with sleep problems.
What to Expect
Evaluation begins with an office appointment with one of our sleep specialists - Dr. Francis Lee or Dr. Irving Smith - who will review your sleep problems and medical history in detail. Depending on the problem, they will then discuss additional testing with you. Testing may include:
- Sleep study - an overnight test performed in our comfortable sleep facility, where a sleep technologist monitors breathing, oxygen levels, brain activity, and muscle activity during sleep. This study allows us to look at your sleep quality and diagnose certain sleep disorders like sleep apnea, periodic limb movements of sleep, and narcolepsy, among others.
- Home sleep study - a "mini" sleep study performed in your own home, which allows for monitoring of breathing and oxygen levels during sleep, and may be an option if the primary concern is the diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea.
- Actigraphy - a watch-like device which monitors activity and is worn at home for 2 weeks providing information about sleep-wake patterns.
- Additional tests may be recommended depending on your individual symptoms.
After appropriate testing, our physicians will discuss a treatment plan aimed at improving your sleep quality and consequently your daytime function and quality of life. Treatments options depend on the specific sleep issue being treated and may include:
- Behavioral strategies
- Devices to treat breathing during sleep (CPAP or oral appliances
Sleep disorders are highly treatable and treatment options can be customized to each individual's needs. The most important thing is taking the first step towards evaluation and diagnosis. At Littleton Regional Healthcare's North Country Sleep Center and our physician's practice - North Country Pulmonology and Sleep Medicine, our goal is to help you get the rest that you need to feel refreshed, recharged and ready to face each day while improving your health. Call today for information, or ask your physician for a referral to our sleep specialists at North Country Pulmonology and Sleep Medicine.
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