Are You in the Dark About Sleep Disorders?

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Americans aren’t getting enough sleep. Whether you are not getting enough sleep, not getting enough good sleep, can’t fall asleep, can’t stay asleep, or can’t stay awake, all of these problems could be a sign of a sleep disorder.  

 

 

While sleep apnea (when a person’s airway closes or narrows during sleep, stopping or reducing breathing) is the most common sleep disorder, there are many other disorders that are equally as disruptive to a person’s life. According to Dr. Joseph Leuschke, director of the Sleep Disorders Centers of EAMC, lifestyle is often the culprit of sleep disorders.  

“Daytime sleepiness can often be accredited to using a phone, tablet or laptop before bed, not taking time to relax between the work day and sleep, and stress,” Dr. Leuschke explains. “When people have trouble sleeping, it’s much more than just sleep apnea, which can be treated with a CPAP. A CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) is a machine that blows air into a tube which is connected to a mask worn by the user. When you have a sleep study done in a comprehensive clinic like ours, all of the different sleep disorders can be diagnosed, much more than just sleep apnea.”  

When diagnosing sleep disorders, including those other than sleep apnea, it’s important to understand that sleep disorders are often also neurological disorders. “Insomnia and narcolepsy are two of the most common neurological sleep disorders,” Dr. Leuschke says. “It takes time to find an appropriate treatment for these disorders; it’s much more than just taking sleeping pills alone. If you are prescribed a sleep study at a comprehensive clinic like the Sleep Disorders Center, if you suffer from any sleeping disorder, we have the ability to diagnose and treat that as well.” 

“We offer expertise in neurology, pulmonology, and in addition, we have direct access to psychology and the rapid response team,” Dr. Leuschke explains. “We have the support of the entire EAMC administration and staff, which allows our sleep center to run smoothly. Because the Sleep Disorders Center is located within the hospital, there is direct access to many different departments. We are a ‘full service’ sleep lab, not just a sleep apnea clinic. We also offer appropriate follow-up and instruction after a sleep study is performed. We have experienced registered sleep personnel, and there is always someone here to answer any questions that you may have.” 

 

Are you suffering from a sleep disorder? Call the Sleep Disorders Cen­ters of EAMC at 334-528- 2406 or visit them at www.sleepcenter.eamc.org/