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Reasons for a Sleep Study

Reasons for a Sleep StudyThe women in this picture is wired up for a sleep study at a sleep clinic which is specifically equipped to study how we sleep at night and how well we sleep. Having gone through one of these sleep studies, the writer can tell you that although it is a bit intimidating with all the wires, it is well worth the effort. If you suspect that you have sleep apnea, this can be one of the reasons for a sleep study; however there are other reasons that doctors will order this kind of study. In the writers case it was because I have a lot of allergies and I was suspected to have sleep apnea.

Reasons for a Sleep Study

Basically I was not sleeping well. I was very tired all of the time and could fall asleep almost any time that I closed my eyes, sitting up, lying down, in my office chair etc. On top of that the snoring was pretty bad and I think my spouse had had enough. After the sleep study it was confirmed that I had sleep apnea and that I should start using a CPAP machine. It was the best thing that I have done. I sleep very well now and I do not snore, thanks to my wife’s suggestion.

What Sensors are Connected During a Sleep Study

There are quite a few sensors connected during your sleep study. They are monitoring a variety of aspects which can interrupt your sleep as well as monitoring how well you sleep. They are as follows:

  • Air intake to measure your actual breathing rhythm
  • Sensors beside your eyes to measure eye movement and rem sleep
  • Sensors on your head to measure brain activity
  • Senor on your chin to measure whether you sleep with your mouth open or not
  • Sensors on your chest to measure heart rate
  • Sensors on your legs to measure how much you move your legs in the night
  • Sensor on your finger to measure the oxygen levels in your blood

This can seem like a lot and you may wonder how you will ever get to sleep with all of this stuff on. But you do go to sleep and all they need is four hours of sleep to complete a sleep study. Most sleep apnea people are pretty tired anyway and have no trouble sleeping just about anywhere. One caution if you are going in for a sleep study. Do not have a coffee after three o’clock in the afternoon and do not bring one with you to the hospital. Apparently people do this and then wonder why they cannot sleep.

Results of Sleep Study

The results of the sleep study were pretty amazing and really they justify the reasons for a sleep study in the first place. During my study, I did stop breathing at various times due to sleep apnea. When this happens, you wake up partially so your sleep is disturbed and you do not get a good sleep especially if this occurs often enough. In addition, my oxygen level lowered to dangerous levels during this time frame and my heart also sped up to a very high level. Apparently your blood pressure also sky rockets during a sleep apnea episode; however they did not measure that. All of these things can contribute to a heart attack or a stroke or both! These are the primary reasons for a sleep study. All of us want to avoid having either a heart attack or a stroke.

During my sleep study, I actually did sleep, although not well due to my ongoing sleep apnea problems, they were able to collect all of the information they needed for the doctor to assess and make a recommendation for me regarding a CPAP machine.

Impact of Using a CPAP Machine

I now have one of these machines and it has made a wonderful difference in my life. I sleep well now. Also I do not snore, and the machine is so quiet that it does not bother me or my spouse. It also has a side effect in that it helps me breathe better when my allergies are bothering me. If you have or suspect that you have sleep apnea, I strongly recommend that you go for a sleep study. You will sleep much better. You will eat less since you will not need that burst of energy you normally look for from snacking food. That means getting control of your weight as well.

For more information about sleep studies and sleep issues, click here.

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