woman awake in the middle of the night

January 3, 2021 2 min to read

How a doctor can help get your sleep back on track

Category : Health

Sleep deprivation is a common health issue, affecting one in every three individuals worldwide. The causes for sleep disruptions are vast; there are about 80 types of sleep disorders, and other few reasons outside of it: pain, stress, and medications, among them.

Sleep requirements vary with every person. In general, the older you get, the less sleeping hours required.

Adults need to get, at least, six up to ten hours of shut-eye to function properly, while children aged five and below need to doze off for, at least, ten hours.

Because it affects the ability to make sound decisions and to react quickly, most daily activities are negatively impacted by sleep deprivation.

When it becomes a regular occurrence, sleeplessness can lead to serious health issues.

If you’re sleeping hours are not anywhere near the normal range, or if you can’t sleep at all, it’s time to seek sleep help.

Whom to Seek Help From

Sleep specialists are doctors who diagnose and treat individuals with sleep disorders. Besides physicians, sleep psychologists are considered as sleep experts, too, with their main task focusing on resolving mental and behavioral issues that contribute to sleep problems.

These medical specialists are considered experts in treating different causes of sleep disorders which can include narcolepsy, insomnia, sleep apnea, and restless leg syndrome (RLS).

Most Common Causes of Sleep Problems

There are many causes of sleep problems. To enumerate a few:

– Medical/ health conditions
– Mental issues such as depression and anxiety
– Certain types of medicines
– Genetics
– Chronic pain
– Aging
– Narcolepsy
– Restless leg syndrome
– Sleep apnea
– Circadian rhythm disruption

The link between lack of sleep and depression is like a “chicken-and-egg” situation. While sleep disturbances might contribute to neurochemical changes in the brain and result in depression, the latter may also lead to erratic sleeping patterns.

Insomnia is a sleep disorder that’s mostly attributed to genetics and the patient’s environment. Gene mutation is a possible culprit as far as genetics is concerned, but this is only in a few rare diseases.

In some cases, your room conditions can disrupt your circadian rhythm, too. A hard, worn-out mattress and too much ambient light can cause discomfort, affecting your slumber.

Using a firm mattress and installing light-blocking curtains can help encourage a sound sleep. In these cases, the problem lies in the environment.

How Doctors Diagnose Sleep Problems

To come up with a correct diagnosis, your doctor will perform physical tests and gather your medical as well as sleep histories.

The sleep specialist may interview you to determine your sleep and waking patterns and how your daily life is affected by…
Continue reading the article and learn more about sleep on Life Is An Episode website.

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