Alaska Sleep Education Center

The Effects of Shift Work on Sleep

Posted by Stefanie Leiter on Aug 18, 2018 12:24:00 AM

Shift work is defined as schedules outside the typical 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. day. Roughly 15 percent of full-time U.S. employees work on shifts outside this traditional schedule. For many, shift work is part of the job as service occupations like healthcare professionals and protective services  are needed 365 days a year 24 hours a day. 

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Topics: insomnia, life with sleep apnea, get better sleep, circadian rhythm, losing sleep, work

Back-to-School Sleep Tips for Parents, Children, and Teens

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 17, 2018 1:22:00 PM

A new school year kicks off Monday morning and that means your child's lazy, relaxed days of summer are about to be replaced with packed schedules full of class time, homework, and after school activities. More than likely your children have been staying up late and sleeping in through much of their summer-break, and getting them back into a healthy sleep routine may be challenging to say the least.

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Topics: school, children, Sleep Tips, sleep and children, teens

Why am I So Tired All The Time, Even After A Full Night's Sleep?

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 16, 2018 8:46:00 PM

Do you often go through the day feeling sleepy, sluggish, and lethargic, even after a full night's rest? While it's common to occasionally feel dead tired during the day, persistent symptoms of daytime drowsiness could be linked to your sleep and health habits.

There are a couple of possible reasons why you may be experiencing daytime drowsiness, and we want to help you better understand what you can do to start feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed everyday.

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Topics: Sleep Tips, tired

Bedwetting (sleep enuresis) in Adults: Causes, Diagnosis, & Treatment

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 16, 2018 2:40:00 PM

Bedwetting (also known as sleep enuresis and urinary incontinence) is a fairly common condition in young children and is seen as a sign of an immature, developing bladder. It is estimated that 15% of children over three, and 10% over five wet the bed occasionally. In fact, most doctors don't consider bedwetting in children to be a sign of a problem unless the child is older than seven years old, or the child has begun wetting the bed again after six months of maintaining overnight bladder control.

However, when adults wet the bed it is often an indication of an underlying illness, disease, or a symptom of other untreated medical conditions.

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Topics: sleep disorders

What is Idiopathic Hypersomnia? The Burden of Always Feeling Sleepy

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 15, 2018 4:20:00 PM

Nearly everybody has experienced those days where you didn't get hardly any sleep the night before (or maybe even a few nights in a row). You're groggy all day, have trouble focusing, your mind drifts as you try to perform mundane tasks, and you may even feel a little more irritable than normal. However, with just one night of good rest, you're back to your normal, focused, alert self in no time.

Now try and imagine what it must be like to live in a state of perpetual drowsiness, chronically plagued with sleepiness. To make matters worse, imagine that you actually sleep just as much, if not more, than the necessary amount, and take frequent naps on top of that. Imagine living a life where you sleep as much as you can, but never get that rested, recharged feeling that sleep is supposed to give you. This is what it's like for those suffering from the rare disorder known as idiopathic hypersomnia.

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Topics: sleep disorders

3 Sleep Disorders That Might Be Causing You to Feel Tired All the Time

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 15, 2018 3:30:00 PM

Many of us will occasionally experience days where we simply feel tired all day long. Usually this is caused by poor sleep the night before, an intense workout the previous day, or even symptoms of a cold or flu. The feelings of extreme fatigue are often remedied with a little rest during the day or some good old fashioned sleep the next night.

For some however, feeling tired and rundown during waking hours is an everyday occurrence. One that with continued lack of sleep can prove to be harmful to their health, and result in accidents or even death from dozing off at inappropriate times. While there are many possible causes of extreme daytime sleepiness including dietary deficiencies, depression, diabetes, anemia, or thyroid problems, chronic daytime fatigue can very likely be caused by a sleep disorder.

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Topics: Narcolepsy, losing sleep

What is a Maintenance of Wakefulness Test ?

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 14, 2018 10:00:00 AM

It may sound a little strange to hear, but not all sleep tests conducted at sleep clinics monitor you as you sleep. One of the tests you may be asked to take is called an MWT, or Maintenance of Wakefulness Test.

While most tests are designed to diagnose sleep disorders during sleep (polysomnogram), monitor how quickly patients fall asleep (MSLT), or to calibrate CPAP machines (CPAP titration) after breathing disorders are diagnosed, the maintenance of wakefulness test is intended to challenge patients to attempt to stay awake during periodic trials. 

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Topics: sleep study, sleep problems

National Wellness Month continues...7 bad sleeping habits to AVOID to receive a good night's sleep

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 13, 2018 8:03:00 PM

We all know that getting good sleep at night has a direct impact on how we feel during the day. If you sleep poorly even one night, you will probably feel sluggish and tired the next day. If you continually get poor sleep it can lead to some serious health problems down the road.

However, while most of us know how important sleep is to our health, many people may not realize that they're practicing poor sleep habits.  Below is a list of seven bad sleeping habits to avoid as soon as possible:

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Topics: Sleep Tips, health, sleep hygiene, wellness

How Sleep Apnea Can Cause Stress and Panic Attacks

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 13, 2018 1:00:00 PM

Panic attacks and anxiety are common conditions that you see often written about. In a 1999 published article in Johns Hopkins Magazine, author David Levine describes in vivid detail his first experiences with panic and anxiety as a college student at age 19. It’s remarkable how these episodes could be attributed instead to new onset apneas.

He quotes, ” The worst attacks struck at the end of dreamless naps. I woke up completely drenched, disoriented, my heart pounding.” His very first episode presented after waking up one morning with an impending sense of doom.

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5 Reasons Why Your Nose is Stuffy

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 10, 2018 11:52:00 AM

A lthough many people assume that big nosed people naturally breathe better, there’s nothing further from the truth.  The shape and size of your nose is mostly cosmetic. How well you breathe actually depends on what your internal breathing passageways look like. And for many sleep apnea sufferers, a stuffy nose can make or break their treatment therapy.

Yet, opening up the nose through medical therapy or even surgery has been found to “cure” sleep apnea in only 10% of people. Patients will definitely feel and breathe better, but it’s unlikely that their sleep apnea is addressed definitively. However, I have seen many of the people in the “10%” group derive significant benefits from clearing up their nasal congestion. Besides breathing better for the first time in years, opening up the nose can allow the person to tolerate and benefit from other treatment options for OSA besides CPAP.

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