Not many of us ask ourselves this question; indeed, for many American adults and increasingly for children, sleep is like money—there’s never enough and we always want more.
How Much Sleep Is Too Much Sleep?
What Stage of Sleep Is Most Important? NREM vs REM Sleep
Insomnia Treatment Options: Sleep Specialist and at Home Solutions
Can’t Sleep? Common Causes and Reasons
Health Consequences of Untreated Insomnia
Is It Insomnia? (Diagnosis and the Sleep Specialist)
Not many of us ask ourselves this question; indeed, for many American adults and increasingly for children, sleep is like money—there’s never enough and we always want more.
Not all sleep is equal. Since the 1930s, modern medicine has known that a full night’s sleep is not a single, continuous experience. Based on EEGs (electro encephalograms) of their nocturnal subjects, sleep researchers discovered distinct...
Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, affecting an estimated 30–50% of Americans at some time or another. This year alone, about 1 in 10 Americans will struggle with a period of sleeplessness.
Do you ever find yourself complaining, “I’m having trouble sleeping” or “I can’t sleep”? If so, you’re not alone. In fact, you’re not even among a small but distinguished group of unfortunates.
If you’re one of the 70 million Americans who experience insomnia from time to time, you probably are familiar with at least a few of the side effects that come from sleep deprivation.
If you’re having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, you may have insomnia. But how can you know for certain that a sleep disorder—or this particular sleep disorder—is to blame for your lack of sleep?
Most of us are familiar with classic insomnia: a temporary period of time during which, for whatever reason, we just can’t fall asleep or stay asleep. In fact, insomnia is very common.
Sleep is a restorative need for all creatures, particularly humans, but it requires not only specific conditions, but also enough time for the full beneficial effects to occur. Body and brain must work together to make "good sleep" a reality.
When you breathe normally, air makes its way to your lungs by passing through your mouth, over your tongue, and past your soft palate, uvula, and tonsils.
Sleep apnea is a common disorder where you have at least one pause in breathing or have shallow breathing as you sleep. These pauses can last anywhere from a few seconds to minutes.
Recent research on sleep apnea, particularly obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has revealed some shocking findings regarding sleep and a man's libido. It turns out, there's a relationship between low testosterone and sleep apnea.
Testosterone is a hormone that your body produces. When you have low testosterone (low-T), it means your body isn't producing enough of this hormone. Although both men and women produce testosterone, men produce it through their testicles.
Sleep is important to health. There is no dispute about that, and quality of sleep is influenced by a wide variety of factors, including stress, diet, temperature, type of mattress and pillow, noise levels, physical ailments, medications, and overall...
According to the American Diabetes Association diabetes affects more than 29.1 million Americans, approximately 9.3% of the population. Diabetes is an endocrine disorder, meaning that it affects hormone levels.
Fibromyalgia is one of the more mysterious and controversial diagnoses that exist in modern medicine. Doctors and scientists debate about many issues related to this diagnosis: is fibromyalgia real? What is the origin of fibromyalgia pain?
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, approximately one in four Americans have suffered from chronic pain. At any given time, millions are experiencing acute pain following an injury.
Obstructive sleep apnea is a very serious medical condition, affecting an estimated 25 million adults in the United States, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
More than 29 million Americans suffer from diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with millions more falling into the “prediabetes” range.
We spend approximately ⅓ of our time asleep, yet scientists still have yet to fully understand the true purposes of sleep.
Research may support the idea that quality sleep can help reduce high levels of stress, anxiety and address symptoms of depression. What is the relationship between sleep and stress, anxiety and depression?
Irritability, loss of focus and daytime sleepiness can all occur when you do not get enough sleep. But what exactly are we talking about when we discuss getting a good night’s rest.
For those who love camping, there is nothing like pitching a tent in the middle of a beautiful forest glade and enjoying the utter peace and quiet of sleeping out in nature, under the stars, away from all the noises of civilization.
Nasal congestion, a runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes, a scratchy throat—these are just a handful of the symptoms that come with springtime allergies. Suffering through these symptoms is an unpleasant inconvenience in ordinary circumstances.
If you work a graveyard shift—or any shift work, including rotating shifts—you may find that the schedule is wreaking havoc on your ability to stick to a healthy eating and exercise program. On top of that, the disruptions to your circadian rhythm can...
From childhood, we have been seen Hollywood’s depiction of the phenomenon of “The Sleepwalker,” a.k.a. a somnambulist. In countless cartoons, movies, sitcoms, etc., a sleeping person (usually dressed in full pajamas and a sleeping cap, complete with...
Sometimes referred to as sleep eating or a nocturnal sleep eating disorder (meaning it happens at night), sleep related eating disorder (SRED) is classified as a non-REM sleep parasomnia—an involuntary, abnormal behavior that occurs at some point during...
William Shakespeare refers to it as an “old hag” in his play “Romeo and Juliet.” Dutch physician Isbrand Van Diemerbroeck in the mid–1600s documented a patient who believed the Devil or a large dog appeared to crush the breath from her.
Very obese children and adults who have daytime fatigue and difficulty concentrating may be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea — but in up to 20% of cases, the diagnosis may be even more serious. Obesity Hypoventilation Syndrome, or OHS...
Remember: quality of sleep is just as important as quantity. If you’re not proceeding through your five phases of sleep, your sleep quality will be poor, no matter how many hours you spend in bed. If you suspect that your sleep quality is compromised...
You probably know how annoying snoring can be, especially when you’re the one having to listen to it. However, if you’re the one snoring and it causes you to repeatedly stop breathing for several seconds at a time, it can also result in cardiovascular...
To someone who may be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), the two-night overnight/nocturnal polysomnogram (NPSG) plus continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) Titration Study is considered the “gold standard” of sleep studies.
Chances are, you have experienced that dragging, dull semi-conscious feeling you get from sleep deprivation (lack of sleep). All you want to do is take a nap. However, for individuals who are suffering with primary hypersomnia...
For many people, dreams are a normal part of sleeping and are purely mental activities that happen during your REM (rapid eye movement) cycle. While your body is resting, it's in your mind that your dreams occur.
Getting enough sleep — at least six hours per night for adults — is critical to maintaining good health. If you chronically sleep too little or have your sleep constantly interrupted by apnea, you may be at a higher-than-average risk for a cluster...
You wouldn’t visit a foot doctor (podiatrist) to treat suspected diabetes, would you? Or a reproductive health specialist if you think you’ve gotten a sprained ankle?
Have you been a lifelong loud snorer? Do you wake up tired, unrested, irritable? Are your days spent fighting sleepiness at work, at home, and even while driving? If so, you may be considered among those suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea
If your doctor suspects you have a sleep disorder like sleep apnea, sleep related movements, or narcolepsy, he or she may refer you to a sleep center for an overnight sleep study, or polysomnogram. The purpose of this sleep study is to monitor you while...
You may not think you have insomnia; after all, you have no trouble feeling exhausted and drifting off to sleep when your head hits the pillow. But night after night, you find yourself awake and staring your alarm clock at about the same time: 3:00 A.M.
If your physician recommends that you undergo an overnight sleep study, also known as nocturnal polysomnography (NPSG), you might be curious what it involves and what you can expect from it.
Cranial problems can often lead to sleep breathing disorders. Craniofacial anomalies (CFA) are a distinct set of deformities found in facial bone and head growth. Anomaly means 'different from normal' or 'irregularity'.
Human evolution shows us that there are distinct variations in facial structure and features. Anthropologists have been examining these traits for some time to see if ancestry plays a role in this diversification. Other research has been conducted to see..
Sleep apnea in children is often undiagnosed or misdiagnosed entirely. Many children are being diagnosed with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) as they’re acting out and getting into trouble at school.
The debate over whether dogs should sleep with you has good arguments on both sides of the fence — or onboth sides of the bed in this case. An interesting survey from WebMD discovered that dog owners are somewhat divided over whether their furry friend...
32% of Washington state adults (18 yrs or older) get <7 hrs of sleep every night
Today's medical media often send out mixed messages when it comes to best practices for good health. Taking naps has been the subject of scrutiny recently.
New Year's resolutions tend to favor quick change for permanent results, but by day 17... who is still sticking to their new plans? By day 17, most of us have abandoned ship.
2017 is just a couple days away. By now, you’ve probably started thinking about your New Year’s Resolutions. If sleeping better is one of your goals for the new year, getting on top of your sleep hygiene and exercise habits are two solid starts.
According to statistics, health-related lifestyle changes are consistently ranked among the top 5 New Year’s Resolutions Americans make each year. In January of 2016, for example, 41% of Americans vowed to live a healthier lifestyle, and nearly 40%...
Believe it or not, 2017 is just a few days away. Right now we’re in that most special time of year — the quiet lull between holiday parties, when we start thinking about our New Year’s Resolutions.
Though the season itself is dark at this time of year, we tend to enjoy more in the way of lights as part of the holiday experience.
Of course, the significance of this date has everything to do with our reliance on the light-dark cycles of the planet to keep our circadian rhythms aligned with the Earth's revolution around the sun.
Use a wool mattress pad; it's hypoallergenic and insullating
Here are some tips for avoiding sleep loss whenever possible and getting the best sleep you can during a hectic time.
The holidays may leave us with images of children struggling to fall asleep at night in anticipation of a visit from a certain jolly man in a red suit, but the reality of lost sleep at this time of year is far more sobering.
We lose sleep for all kinds of reasons. We also gain weight for all kinds of reasons. However, when it comes to either concern, there's a well-established association between insufficient sleep and obesity.
As many as 2 million Americans a year are affected by concussions or other forms of traumatic brain injury, but many of them do not link their head traumas to sleep problems that develop after the fact.
Disrupted sleep is a common problem for people suffering from dementia.
Epilepsy is a complex neurological condition with well-established ties to sleep health. Its 2-way relationship with the sleep-wake cycle makes it difficult to diagnose, especially for those who only have epileptic seizures at night (nocturnal seizures).
Sometimes a patient will participate in a sleep study to identify or confirm a diagnosis of sleep apnea.
For those starting continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy (or other types of PAP therapy) for the first time, there are lots of unknowns to consider. We try to take the fear of the unknown out of the process because we know that the better...
It's easy to blame the Thanksgiving turkey for causing your late-day lethargy on this day of feasting. After all, the poor bird can't speak for itself, and it's the centerpiece of most holiday meals in the United States.
Who hasn't struggled to think of the perfect holiday gift for a loved one who seems to have everything? If that loved one in your life is a CPAP user, we can help you solve that problem.
Seattleites love their coffee. According to a coffee culture article in The Daily Beast, we number 35 coffee shops for every 100,00 residents, making us the most caffeine-saturated American city. (Another fun fact: we frequently rank as having the most...
Winter is coming, and so is the weather that comes with it: high winds, heavy ran, snow, and ice, all of which can cause the power grid to go down during the night...
Bruxism is the act of clenching or grinding your teeth, either out of habit or unconsciously. Though some people grind their teeth unwittingly during the day, most tooth grinders engage in what's called nocturnal bruxism — nighttime tooth grinding...
Many e-cigarette users enjoy the nighttime ritual of one last puff before bed. Before enjoying those flavored e-cigs, you may want to read up on vaping and what exactly it is you're inhaling. The sleep-stealing components of e-cigarette vapor may...
For some people, the frustration of using CPAP has nothing to do with the actual application of the therapy. They may truly love using their mask and enjoy its benefits. However, they may have a different problem: unreliable access to electricity to run...
Children, as we recently discussed, are just as likely to suffer from sleep apnea as adults. Their experiences and symptoms often resemble those of adults, but for some children, sleep-disordered breathing is directly related to their development.
Sleep apnea has long been considered a medical concern for older people, but the reality is quite different. Children, from infancy to adolescence, can also suffer from sleep apnea.
One thing we can count on, living in Seattle, are weather-related power outages. The wind picks up, the trees blow down or lose branches, and there goes the electricity!
When you are scheduled for a nocturnal polysomnogram, otherwise known as an attended sleep study, you may have lots of questions and concerns about this kind of test.
A troubling phase in the sleep apnea lexicon: CPAP failure. This term is used primarily by insurers, but it can be mistaken as judgment against sleep apnea patients who have given treatment a valiant effort but aren't seeing a positive result.
Once you set up your CPAP therapy system at home, you should be "good to go." However, in the event you have specific struggles with using CPAP, or have specific needs above and beyond the typical user, you do have options.
Not sure when you should be replacing or replenishing your CPAP equipment? Clip and save this handy schedule and keep with your CPAP supply stash for regular reminders.
This is the time of year when you could be saving a good deal of money on all facets of your sleep apnea therapy. Insurance deductibles are often met by this time of year for many. Might this be your case?
Many new CPAP patients don’t realize they have options for purchasing or renting equipment for their therapy.
In our last blog post, we discussed 3 of 6 common problems with using CPAP: trouble falling asleep, dryness, and problems with congestion. Here's a guide to 3 other key complaints from CPAP users and some basic solutions.
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is considered the gold standard for treating sleep apnea (especially obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA). However, while some people take to this therapy just fine, it may be more problematic for others.
Some of the more important parts of sleep apnea machines are not typically noticed during their use. The filters (there are two) ensure that the air used in continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is safe and healthy to breathe.
Getting to know your CPAP therapy can be awkward and uncomfortable, just like it can be when you are getting to know a perfect stranger.
Critical to using continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) to treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the way your mask fits. A leaking CPAP mask compromises the quality of your treatment; optimal therapy depends on a secure seal between the mask...
Whether you've been newly diagnosed with sleep apnea, or you are in the market for a new CPAP mask, you still need to find a mask that fits you correctly and feels good.
After insomnia, sleep apnea is the most common sleep disorder in the US, affecting nearly 20 million Americans.
When fall arrives in the Pacific Northwest, it comes wrapped in a dark, gray, wet blanket. Take one quick look outside. Yes, unfortunately, the dark season is here.
Early to bed, early to rise... doesn't seem to have the same meaning these days, if you consider the way in which our circadian rhythms shape our behaviors and patterns, both day and night.
"Melatonin use among adults in the United States more than doubled between 2007 and 2012," with over 3 million people currently taking the supplement.
The truth about pregnancy & sleep apnea
Sometimes it may seem as if every chronic health concern can be traced back to untreated sleep apnea. And in many ways, that's not an unrealistic conclusion, given what we know about sleep breathing disorders and how they systemically influence all the...
According to statistics from the 2015 Sleep in America™ Poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation:
Often, insomnia is the outcome of our inability to relax at night. It can be hard to wind down after a long, stressful day.
Insomnia, as we've discussed at this blog previously, leads to problems with intense fatigue and cognitive "fog," as well as adverse influences over mood, if it becomes chronic and remains untreated.