Alaska Sleep Education Center

Camping In Winter

Posted by Stefanie Leiter on Jan 8, 2019 4:04:00 PM

Camping enthusiasts that live in climates with drastic temperature changes do not want a limited time to explore the outdoors. But in order to stay safe while camping in the frigid tundra, especially snowy or icy covered regions, requires smart planning and research.

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Topics: camping, sleep apnea, winter

Six Types of Parasomnia

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Nov 1, 2018 1:36:00 PM

Parasomnias are a group of sleep disorders in which something goes awry with a person’s sleep cycle.

If you break down the word “parasomnia,” you get “para,” which can mean abnormal or incorrect, “somnia,” which, of course, means sleep. Indeed, something is not normal or correct with the sleep of a parsomnia sufferer.

Parasomnias are oftened referred by those in the sleep medicine field as those things that go "Bump in the Night" since many are associated with some type of movement during sleep.

Outside of sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome, and periodic limb movement disorder, many disruptive sleep disorders can be considered a parasomnia. And most of them can lead to sleep deprivation—after all, even if you get the ideal 7-9 hours of sleep, the quality of those hours can be diminished if your sleep cycle is interrupted. Here are six common parasomnias that afflict sleepers:

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Topics: sleep apnea, sleep disorders, parasomnia, night terrors, nightmares

The Thyroid-Sleep Connection

Posted by Stefanie Leiter on Oct 9, 2018 2:10:00 PM

Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) is a condition in which your thyroid gland doesn't produce enough of certain important hormones. Women are more likely to have hypothyroidism as it upsets the normal balance of chemical reactions in your body. Thyroid disorders are common affecting about 12 percent of Americans at some point during their lives.


According to, the thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland that drapes across the front of your windpipe. For an idea on location, you will feel your thyroid by placing two fingers on the side of your windpipe. After swallowing, the gland slides under your fingers.


The gland releases a thyroid hormone, which controls the growth and metabolism of essentially every part of your body. The pituitary gland in the middle of your head monitors your physiology and releases thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). TSH is the signal to the thyroid gland to release thyroid hormone (1).


“Sometimes TSH levels increase, but the thyroid gland can't release more thyroid hormone in response. This is known as primary hypothyroidism, as the problem begins at the level of the thyroid gland. Other times, TSH levels decrease, and the thyroid never receives the signal to increase thyroid hormone levels. This is called secondary hypothyroidism.”


Though there is not one direct symptom of hypothyroidism, outside weight gain or fatigue patients may experience:

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Topics: sleep apnea, fatigue, thyroid

Your Dental Health and It's Connection to Sleep Apnea

Posted by Stefanie Leiter on Oct 3, 2018 12:30:00 PM

Gasping for air when either asleep or awake. It's not a good sign for your health. One reason people gasp for air can be sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is directly related to so many other health issues, including depression, oral health and anxiety.

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Topics: dental, sleep apnea, sleep hygiene

Sleep Medications are NOT Meant for Long-term Use

Posted by Mayo Clinic Staff on Sep 25, 2018 4:00:00 PM

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: What is the best way to eliminate insomnia? For almost a year, I've had trouble getting much sleep. I've tried over-the-counter medications, but they aren't very effective.

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Topics: medication, insomnia, sleep apnea

The Association Between Diabetes and Sleep Apnea

Posted by Guest Blogger: Jerry Curry, on Sep 13, 2018 5:00:00 PM

As people age, they are more prone to developing conditions as their organs and senses mature. Diabetes and sleep apnea are two disturbing conditions that seniors should watch out. It has been reported that Diabetes and Sleep Apnea are correlated. Manifestations of clinical research revealed that approximately 48% of individuals diagnosed with type 2 diabetes have displayed symptoms of sleep apnea, while 86% of obese people with type 2 diabetes are diagnosed with sleep apnea.

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Topics: diabetes, sleep apnea

Sleep Apnea and Heart Disease: The Risks of Untreated Sleep Apnea

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 23, 2018 5:36:00 PM

There is a growing awareness concerning the link between sleep apnea and the consequences of excessive daytime sleepiness. Many people are beginning to realize the terrible impact that sleep apnea can have on their everyday lives and well being. However, the greatest threat to one's health from untreated sleep apnea isn't just the damaging effects of sleep deprivation, but the risk of developing heart disease.

Studies have shown a strong link between sleep apnea and a slew of cardiovascular problems that include high blood pressure, heart arrhythmia, heart attack, and cardiovascular disease. Studies also show that when patients with sleep apnea are treated for their disorder, their blood pressure and risk of heart disease drops significantly.

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Topics: sleep apnea

Seven Signs You Might Have Sleep Apnea

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 1, 2018 2:07:00 PM

Sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders afflicting approximately 20 million adults in the U.S. with an estimated 80% of cases going undiagnosed. Many people may be unaware that a sleep disorder is the underlying cause of their health problems, and others may be aware of their sleep disorder but uninformed of the severe consequences of untreated sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea is characterized by frequent breaks or pauses in breathing during sleep. There are 3 forms of sleep apnea: Central sleep apnea (CSA) in which the pauses are due to the brain failing to signal the respiratory system to breathe; obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in which breathing is interrupted by a physical blockage in the upper airways, often caused by soft tissues of the throat and tongue collapsing into the airway; and complex/mixed sleep apnea which is a combination of central sleep apnea and obstructive sleep apnea.

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Topics: losing sleep, sleep deprivation, sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, sleep problems

The 3 Types of Sleep Apnea Explained: Obstructive, Central, & Mixed

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Jul 13, 2018 8:04:00 AM

Sleep apnea is a very common sleep disorder, affecting roughly 20 million Americans. Sleep apnea is a condition in which a person stops breathing periodically during sleep. These cessations in breathing can occur anywhere from a few times a night up to hundreds of times a night. When a person stops breathing in their sleep, they are partially awakened from sleep as their brain is forced out of deeper stages of sleep to get the body to begin breathing again. When this occurs several times an hour, quality sleep decreases, and a whole slew of medical problems can begin to arise.

While many people may be familiar with the most prevalent form of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, it often goes unrecognized that there are other types of apneas that a person may be suffering from. Here we aim to shed light on all three of the types of sleep apnea and discuss the symptoms, prevalence, causes, and treatments of each.

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Topics: sleep apnea, sleep disorders

5 Ways Sleep Apnea Can Cause Gastrointestinal Problems

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Jun 14, 2018 12:32:00 PM

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Topics: health, gastro problems, sleep apnea

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