According to the American Sleep Association (ASA), 50 to 70 million adults in the United States have some type of sleep disorder. Some of the most common types of sleep disorders include insomnia, sleep apnea, Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS), and sleepwalking. If you have a sleep disorder, it's important to get a sleep study done.
The Importance of Getting a Sleep Study
It's important to undergo a sleep study so that a diagnosis can be made and you can get the proper treatment. If you have a sleep disorder and it goes untreated, it could cause some of the following complications:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Other medical conditions
If you experience any of the common symptoms of a sleep disorder, including feeling tired even after getting enough hours of sleep, or snoring on a regular basis, you should get one of the following types of sleep studies done.
1. Polysomnogram (PSG)
This type of study records different body function as you sleep and is usually recommended for those who suffer with sleep apnea. During the test, electrodes get placed on certain parts of your body to record things like brain activity, oxygen levels, eye movement, heart rate, and breathing rate.
2. Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT)
This type of study measures something called sleep latency, which is how much time goes by from the time you fall asleep to the first signs of sleep. This test helps you recognize how slowly or quickly it takes you to fall asleep. An MSLT is performed during the day and measures two stages of sleep, including Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and non-REM.
3. Home Sleep Test
If for some reason having a sleep study done in a clinic or lab doesn't work, or your doctor feels it would be better to do it at home, you could do a home sleep test. This type of sleep test is usually recommended for those with either moderate or severe obstructive sleep apnea.
If you have a major medical condition, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or congestive heart failure, you may not be a candidate for a home sleep test. If you are able to do a home sleep test, it will be used to measure the amount of airflow that goes through your mouth and nose as you sleep.
If you get diagnosed with a sleep disorder, there are many treatment options available, including having a sleep apnea procedure done, having to wear a CPAP machine, taking prescription medications, and developing better sleep habits. Contact an ENT specialist for more help.