Signs of Having a Sleep Disorder / Find a Specialist

Part 16 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Look over this list of common signs of a sleep disorders, and talk to your doctor if you have any of them: It takes you more than 30 minutes to fall asleep at night. You awaken frequently in the night and then have trouble falling back to sleep again. […]

How are sleep disorders diagnosed?

Part 11 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Depending on what your symptoms are, your doctor will gather various kinds of information and consider several possible tests when trying to decide if you have a sleep disorder: Sleep history and sleep log. Your doctor will ask you how many hours you sleep each night, how often you […]

Insomnia: Common Sleep Disorders

Part 13 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Insomnia is defined as having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, or as having unrefreshing sleep despite having ample opportunity to sleep. Life is filled with events that occasionally cause insomnia for a short time. Such temporary insomnia is common and is often brought on by stressful situations such […]

Sleep Apnea: Common Sleep Disorders

Part 15 of Healthy Sleep Guide. In people who have sleep apnea (also referred to as sleep-disordered breathing), breathing briefly stops or becomes very shallow during sleep. This change is caused by intermittent blocking of the upper airway, usually when the soft tissue in the rear of the throat collapses and partially or completely closes […]

Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS): Common Sleep Disorders

Part 14 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Restless legs syndrome (RLS) causes an unpleasant prickling or tingling in the legs, especially in the calves, that is relieved by moving or massaging them. This sensation creates a need to stretch or move the legs to get rid of these uncomfortable or painful feelings. As a result, a […]

Narcolepsy: Common Sleep Disorders

Part 12 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Narcolepsy’s main symptom is excessive and overwhelming daytime sleepiness, even after adequate nighttime sleep. In addition, nighttime sleep may be fragmented by frequent awakenings. People who have narcolepsy often fall asleep at inappropriate times and places. Although television sitcoms occasionally feature these individuals to generate a few laughs, narcolepsy […]

Parasomnias (Abnormal Arousals): Common Sleep Disorders

Part 10 of Healthy Sleep Guide. In some people, the walking, talking, and other body functions normally suppressed during sleep emerge during certain sleep stages. Alternatively, the paralysis or vivid images usually experienced during dreaming may persist after awakening. These arousal malfunctions are collectively known as parasomnias and include confusional arousals, sleep talking, sleep walking, […]

12 Tips for Getting a Good Night’s Sleep

Part 8 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Stick to a sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up the same time each day. As creatures of habit, people have a hard time adjusting to altered sleep patterns. Sleeping later on weekends won’t fully make up for the lack of sleep during the week and will make […]

What Disrupts Sleep

Part 9 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Many factors can prevent a good night’s sleep. These factors range from well-known stimulants, such as coffee, to certain pain relievers, decongestants, and other culprits. Many people depend on the caffeine in coffee, soft drinks (for example, colas), or tea to wake them up in the morning or to […]

Snoring: Could it Be a Problem?

Snoring is caused by a narrowing or partial blockage of your airways at the back of the mouth and upper throat. This obstruction results in increased air turbulence when breathing in, causing the soft tissues in your throat to vibrate. The end result is a noisy snore that can disrupt the sleep of your bed […]

Top 10 Myths about Sleep

Part 6 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Myth 1: Sleep is a time when your body and brain shut down for rest and relaxation. No evidence shows that any major organ (including the brain) or regulatory system in the body shuts down during sleep. Some physiological processes actually become more active while you sleep. For example, […]

How much sleep is enough?

Part 7 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Animal studies suggest that sleep is as vital as food for survival. Rats, for example, normally live 2–3 years, but they live only 5 weeks if they are deprived of REM sleep and only 2–3 weeks if they are deprived of all sleep stages—a timeframe similar to death due […]

What does sleep do for you?

Part 5 of Healthy Sleep Guide. A number of tasks vital to health and quality of life are linked to sleep, and these tasks are impaired when you are sleep deprived. Learning, Memory, and Mood Students who have trouble grasping new information or learning new skills are often advised to “sleep on it,” and that […]

Driving Tired: Crash into Bed, not the Road

Most people are aware of the hazards of drunk driving. But driving while sleepy can be just as dangerous. Indeed, crashes due to sleepy drivers are as deadly as those due to drivers impaired by alcohol. And you don’t have to be asleep at the wheel to put yourself and others in danger. Both alcohol […]

3 simple tips for dealing with jet lag

Part 4 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Eastward travel generally causes more severe jet lag than westward travel because traveling east requires you to shorten the day, and your biological clock is better able to adjust to a longer day than a shorter day. Fortunately for globetrotters, a few preventive measures and treatments seem to help […]

What Makes You Sleep

Part 3 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Although you may put off going to sleep in order to squeeze more activities into your day, eventually your need for sleep becomes overwhelming and you are forced to get some sleep. This daily drive for sleep appears to be due, in part, to a compound known as adenosine. […]

What is Sleep?

Part 2 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Sleep was long considered just a uniform block of time when you are not awake. Thanks to sleep studies done over the past several decades, it is now known that sleep has distinct stages that cycle throughout the night in predictable patterns. How well rested you are and how […]

Sleep: Background And Introduction

Part 1 of Healthy Sleep Guide. Think of everything you do during your day. Try to guess which activity is so important you should devote one-third of your time to doing it. Probably the first things that come to mind are working, spending time with your family, or pursuing leisure activities. But there’s something else […]