Insomnia Affects The Daytime Functioning And Quality Of Life

Insomnia is a situation wherein the person experiences a persistent difficulty in initiating or maintaining sleep. It is associated with impaired daytime functioning and distress. Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder and has a number of negative daytime symptoms and psychiatric disorders. The common consequences of insomnia include:

  1. Daytime sleepiness: Sleep deprivation is a critical factor and a big public safety hazard. Drowsiness slows the reaction time and cause car crash and fatal accidents.
  2. Makes you dumb: Sleep is very important for effective learning and thinking. Lack of sleep hurt the cognitive processes. Firstly, it impairs the attention, concentration, alertness, problem solving and reasoning. This makes it difficult to learn effectively. Secondly, at night the various sleep cycles play an important role in consolidating memories in the mind. If you are sleep deprived, it becomes difficult to remember what you learned and experienced.
  3. Serious health problems: Sleep disorder can put you at risk of major health problems like heart attack and erratic heartbeat. Chronic insomnia leads to high blood pressure and high heart rate which leads to heart failure.
  4. No or less sex drive: Sleep experts say that sleep deprived men and women report less interest in sex and lower libidos. The sleepiness, depleted energy and increased tension are to be blamed for it. For men who suffer from sleep apnea, a respiratory problem that interferes with the sleep, and further adds to the sexual slump. Also, men with sleep apnea have low testosterone levels.

The other problems associated with insomnia that hinders the quality of life are depressed mood, fatigue, impaired cognition, lack of energy and increased irritability. All these together affect your performance and behavior with the people around you. So, the best way to live a normal lifestyle is by treating insomnia as soon as possible by trying a couple of home remedies and professional assistance.

Rest Assured Sleep Institute: The Place to Come for a Good Night’s Sleep

Insomnia is commonplace; for many, the night isn’t a time to rest but rather to toss and turn simply because they cannot fall asleep. The problem with insomnia is that if untreated it can interfere with the quality of life. Sleep is vital because it restores both the brain and the body. Lack of rest can lead to irritability, mood swings, poor cognition and more. As a result, your work will suffer and so will your relationships. Some of the people who come to us for help are at their wits end – they have lost jobs and marriages because they couldn’t sleep at night.

This doesn’t have to be the case for you. Once you come to us our professionals will do whatever it takes to help you get your life back together by ensuring that you sleep at night. The first thing that we do is send you for a physical; in many cases, a health problem could be the cause of lack of sleep. If you are healthy then we work with you to establish why you can’t sleep. We will talk about emotional problems that may be in the way and any anxieties that may be keeping you awake.

After we establish what is hindering your sleep we then work on ways to help you sleep better at night. We have a wide range of sleep aids to choose from so you can be sure that we will have one that will help you. We don’t leave it there; we are very keen to follow-up and see how you are doing. It isn’t uncommon for people to regress and fall back into insomnia after some time. If this happens to you we will find a way to help you sleep better once again.

Our intake is year round so you can come to us whenever you are ready. We work with both male and female adults. If you have any questions do not hesitate to get in touch with us for answers.

Different Types Of Treatments And Services Assured By Sleep Disorder Clinic

Are you frustrated most of the times throughout the day? Has your partner complained about your bringing down the house at night with your snoring? Then it is high time that you consult a medical practitioner as it is very critical to get a good night’s sleep for the healthy body and mind. It helps you to function properly, contributes to your health and promotes restorative functioning such as facial skin cell rejuvenation.

If your ability to sleep is affected by prolonged snoring and want to live a happy and healthy life, then you must consider the following treatments and services offered by sleep disorder clinics:

  1. Sleep program: There are many online interactive programs that benefit individuals who are experiencing insomnia, generally from 1 to 6 months. This is an alternative treatment to take sleep medications. People who have persistent insomnia, for more than six months may also benefit from this program. Individuals in this program will learn the lifestyle and sleep habits that will improve their sleep patterns. A good sleep program includes:
  • 6 weeks of effective sleep therapy
  • A daily sleep score and online sleep log
  • Recommendations for improving sleep on a regular basis
  • Activities that help to induce sleep
  • Personal goal/progress charts
  • Motivational tips
  • 6 unique relaxation practices
  1. PAP Therapy: Positive Airways Pressure testing is often recommended for individuals with Obstructive Sleep Apnea. This condition causes the upper airways to collapse during sleep. This prevents air from entering your lungs. The PAP device works by keeping the airways open via air pressure that is introduced, though a nose mask or similar apparatus. The air travels to the throat and into the upper airways. The quantity of air pressure is then measured by the pap machine in the sleep study. Two types of devices may be used in PAP therapy:
  2. CPAP or Continuous Positive Airways Pressure has been the most frequently used PAP devices. The Auto PAP can modify the pressure that is applied in the night to determine the absence or presence of respiratory disorders that are sleep-induced.
  3. Adaptive-Servo Ventilation is a positive airway pressure that constantly monitors a patient’s breathing patterns. A mask delivers air through the mouth or nose.  Both devices can be adjusted to different sizes to match the individual’s needs. The sleep technologist or specialist will do the fitting.
  4. PAP-Naps: This procedure occurs in the daytime and is offered to patients who are hesitant or resistant to undergoing diagnosis and treatment of a sleep-related breathing disorder, the PAP therapy. It involves a group or individual education, close follow up, sleep technician coaching, objective data monitoring and telephone calls. The PAP-Nap is an in-lab, cardio-respiratory, abbreviated recording monitored by a technologist. The goal is to improve a patient’s PAP compliance. Pap-Naps are offered in the setting of PAP therapy to patients who suffer from sleep breathing issues and are co-morbid with other conditions such as panic attacks, insomnia, and anxiety. The procedure may vary from 60 to 180 minutes, during which time the sleep technologist will provide individual counseling and coaching to help the patient overcome barriers to PAP therapy.
  5. Sleep Test: Many sleep disorders like sleep apnea requires an overnight observation in a sleep laboratory. During this sleep testing, electrodes placed on your head will record your brain activity, muscle activity and eye movement. Sensors are also placed on your chest, abdomen and nose monitor breathing patterns. On the night of the test, you will be asked to sleep at your usual bedtime. Individuals who suffer from narcolepsy may have to undergo a multiple sleep-latency test following the overnight sleep test. The sleep test provides a comprehensive and objective evaluation that will help medical professionals with a complete picture of your sleep patterns.

These sleep treatments and services offered at sleep disorder clinic needs to be chosen keeping the personal health and medical condition in consideration.

All You Need To Know About Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy, a neurological disorder affects the control of wakefulness and sleep. People with narcolepsy experience extreme daytime sleepiness and uncontrollable episodes of falling asleep during the daytime. These sleep attacks can occur at any time of the day and during any activity.

In a typical sleep cycle, the body enters the early stage of sleep that is followed by deeper sleep stage and roughly about 90 minutes the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep. But people suffering from narcolepsy, REM occur almost immediately in the sleep cycle and periodically during the waking hours. It is during the REM sleep that we experience the muscle paralysis and dreams that explains the symptoms of narcolepsy.

rem sleep

Causes of Narcolepsy

Though, the causes of narcolepsy are still not identified, but research shows that genes play a major role. The genes control the chemical production in the brain that signals awake and sleep cycles. In case of faulty genes, the cycle is abrupt and it causes problems. Some experts believe narcolepsy to be the result of a deficiency of hypocretin chemical produced by the brain.

Symptoms of Narcolepsy

Wondering, what are the symptoms of narcolepsy? Some of them are mentioned for your reference:

  1. Excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS): Excessive daytime sleepiness interferes with the normal activities on a daily basis, irrespective of whether the person with narcolepsy had sufficient sleep at night. People suffering with EDS report lack of energy, mental cloudiness, lack of concentration, memory lapses, extreme exhaustion and depressed mood.
  2. Sleep paralysis: Here the person witness temporary inability to speak or move while waking up or falling asleep. These episodes generally last for a few seconds to minutes. Right after the end of the episode, the person recovers with their full capacity to speak and move around.
  3. Cataplexy: Herein, the person experiences a sudden loss of muscle tone that results in weakness and loss of voluntary muscle control. This might result in body collapse to slurred speech to total depending on the muscles involved. In most cases it is triggered by intense emotions such as anger, laughter and surprise.

Risks involved

Narcolepsy is a lifestyle threatening sleep disorder as it affects your daily activities and make you feel disabled by affecting the relationship at work or home. The laziness, antagonism and disinterest that mark the symptoms are often not understood by many which mar the personal and professional relationships. This is not all, the risk of accidents is quite high due to the abrupt and variable nature. In most cases, people have been reported to have fallen asleep while driving.

So, if you or your loved one is suffering from Narcolepsy, it is best to seek immediate medical assistance and visit to sleep clinic for the best help.

Is Lack of Sleep Affecting Your Weight?

Dieters around the world will be shocked to learn that their lack of sleep or issues with insomnia may be the cause of them gaining weight, or prevent them from loosing those last 10 pounds. According to studies that were published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, loss of sleep may have a direct effect on how hungry a person is the following day.

Sleep and Hormones

The hormones ghrelin and leptin both influence appetite and are released during sleep. If you are lacking hours of sleep or have poor quality sleep the leptin levels will plunge and your brain will not be able to receive the message saying that your stomach is full, causing your appetite to increase during the day. In addition to leptin levels plunging, the ghrelin levels increase and stimulate your appetite even further, causing you to overeat.

For someone who is adhering to their healthy diet may find it extremely difficult not to eat larger servings or even cheat on their diet with a sugary snack. A common fix to frequent hunger pains tends to be a cup of coffee filled with cream and sugar. These types of temporary fixes can cause weight gain or prevent you from losing more weight.

Sleeping Habits

If you find that you are following all of the rules of your diet, eating healthy and exercising, but still can’t seem to shake off those last 10 to 5 pounds, you may want to focus on your sleeping habits. Are you eating right before bed? Even though it might be a healthy snack, eating before bed can cause your sleep to be interrupted. For example, you may enjoy a fresh orange right before bed. This healthy snack is approved for your diet and is low in calories and high in vitamins. However, it is also an acidic food that can cause you to wake up several times during the night due to discomfort from experiencing heartburn or acid reflux. The frequent waking up effects your quality and quantity of sleep and causes your leptin and ghrelin hormones to make you feel hungry. When you awake in the morning, instead of adhering to your healthy breakfast you have scheduled, you will probably want to consume more food, or grab a donut to satisfy your hunger pains.

Improve Your Sleeping Habits

You can do a few things that will help you improve your sleep. In this case you will want to begin with eating your last snack, meal and drink of the day at least two hours prior to your bedtime. In addition, you will want to avoid consuming alcohol and caffeine before bed as well. Drinking water prior to going to bed may seem harmless but it will cause you to frequently wakeup during the night and interrupt your sleep many times.

It is wise to eat a healthy diet and indulge in your favorite foods in moderation. However, if you find yourself frequently needing to eat unhealthy snacks, you may want to focus on your sleep habits and improving them in order to reach and maintain your goal weight.

This post pulled much information from the brilliant Slumber Sage, more info on their RebelMouse account.

How Sleep Affects Your Mood

Do your loved ones frequently tell you that you are in a bad mood? Even though it may hurt your feelings, do you realize it is a fact? Many people may wonder why they feel irritable and in a grouchy mood throughout the day. Usually this leads to cups of coffee and blaming it on stress or other factors. But did you know your bad mood can be related to the quantity and quality of sleep you experience? Studies have shown that there is a link between sleep and mood.

The Link Between Sleep and Mood

University of Pennsylvania researchers conducted a study on several subjects and discovered that people who are sleep deprived and only have about four hours of sleep per night are increasingly sad, angry and stressed. Once the subjects returned to sleeping at least 7 hours per night or more, their mood improved and the negative feelings of sadness, anger and anxiety disappeared.

Sleep Problems

While stress and anxiety from living in today’s busy world is a common cause for restless nights and insomnia, there are physical symptoms that may affect your quality and quantity of sleep as well. Prescription medications may have side effects that interfere with sleep. In addition, there are sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and narcolepsy that can also affect your ability to have a good night sleep. Symptoms that a sleep disorder might be present include, deep snoring, holding your breath during sleep, waking up out of your sleep gasping for air, choking or frequent sore throats. If you experience any of these symptoms it is recommended that you see your physician.

How to Improve Your Quality of Sleep

These tips relate to those who suffer from acute to mild insomnia and it can help those who have serious sleep disorders as well.

  • Create a comfortable, serene environment to sleep in – Your mattress should provide stability as well as comfort. The décor in your bedroom should be in colors such as beige, tan, ivory, taupe and brown. Green plants either fake or real will help provide color therapy and encourage relaxation. Aroma therapy with scents such as vanilla and lavender will help calm your senses.
  • Avoid Caffeine Before Bed – Your body can feel the effects from your morning coffee up to 12 hours afterwards. Imagine the effects you will feel when you drink a cup of coffee right before bed.
  • Establish a Sleep Schedule – Go to sleep at the same time every night. This will set your body clock and soon you will naturally feel the need to sleep at that time every night. In addition it will cause you to wake up every morning at the same time. Eventually you won’t need to wake up to your alarm clock.
  • Eat Two Hours Prior – Eating a snack or meal right before you go to bed can cause symptoms such as snoring, heartburn and acid reflux. These symptoms cause discomfort and provoke you to wake up during the night.

Insomnia and Your Mood

According to Dr. Lawrence Epstein, Medical Director of Sleep Health Centers, people who have anxiety and are depressed frequently have trouble with sleep. Those who suffer from depression and anxiety will usually experience difficulty sleeping and may suffer from insomnia on a regular basis. On the other hand, people who experience chronic insomnia have an increased risk of developing anxiety and depression. As you can see the lack of sleep in insomnia sufferers is linked to the development of mood disorders. This is actually good news for many of those who suffer from mood disorders, because improved quantity and quality of sleep can help relieve depression and sadness.

If you suffer from depression or anxiety disorders such as panic attacks, it is wise that you visit your doctor to determine the cause. During your consultation with your doctor you will want to discuss your sleep habits to see if it is attributing to your mood disorder. One of the best ways to provide your doctor with your sleep habit information is to keep a sleep journal for about two weeks. Precisely note your sleep habits before bed, your before bed routine, the time you go to bed and wake up, physical symptoms such as snoring and gasping for air, plus the amount of times you wake up during the night. Provide this journal to your doctor and discuss ways to improve your sleep habits. Everyone deserves a good night sleep, make it happen for you today and improve your mood too.

How I Was Able to Sleep Better With the Proper Guidance

Better Sleep Cartoon

Getting a good nights sleep was becoming more and more difficult to me. I began to fantasize about the good old days when I slept like a log and woke up feeling rested and ready for the day. It became more and more frustrating to deal with as time went on and I became difficult to be around. My family and friends weren’t enjoying my morning grumpiness at all.

I finally was so fed up that I began looking for help from outside sources. There were articles, studies, and forums abound on the internet that I read. Different theories and different methods were tried all with varying results. I finally decided to visit my local sleep institute and meet with professionals that dealt with people like me on a daily basis.

When I met the doctors at the sleep institute, I was quite skeptical. I really didn’t think they could do much to help me. However, I figured they may be able to at least shine some light on potential reasons for my issue. First, they made me submit to an overnight study in which they would monitor my sleep. This was certainly interesting and surprising. I decided to try it and see just what the professionals would learn and tell me about myself.

I didn’t fall asleep until well after midnight, as I was shifting and tossing constantly. When I woke up, the good doctors gave me their thoughts. They told me that the biggest issue for me seemed to be comfort. They recommended that simply purchasing a new, comfortable mattress would help a lot. Also, the doctors told me about playing light music which soothes my mind and heart would help in resting my mind as well as my body. I wasn’t sure if they were right, but I knew I had to try.

After my visit to the sleep institute, I followed their advice to the letter. I purchased a new mattress that supported my back and body well. I even purchased a music CD that played soothing tunes and blissful sounds. To my surprise, my sleep did improve drastically and so did my moods.

How Sleep Works

Every human being requires sleep to survive and live a healthy life. Although many people may cheat themselves from hours of sleep now and then, it is still an essential must for everyone. Many may wonder how sleep works. What are the stages? What does the body go through when sleeping? These are all important questions that have surprising and interesting answers.

Characteristics of Sleep

A person will lie down on a comfortable flat surface such as a bed or sofa. Their eyes are closed, muscles are relaxed, they have a slow rhythmic pattern of breathing, the heart slows down and about twice an hour the person adjusts their sleeping position.

the brain on sleep

Go to bed for a healthy brain!

What Happens in the Brain?

During sleep delta and theta brain waves are present. According to Slumber Sage, As a person falls into a deep sleep the brainwave patterns slow down. 25% of the night sleep is spent in REM sleep. REM is also known as rapid eye movement and it is experienced three to five times per night during sleep.  Follow Slumber Sage on Twitter @slumbersage or Facebook.


Dreams are created by the brain when random electrical activity is processed about every 90 minutes during the sleep process. It is the brains response to random impulses. Dreams usually involve the person who is having the dream. Dreams can be in black and white or vivid color.

Stages of Sleep

  • Stage One – The process of being awake and falling asleep. Light Sleep.
  • Stage Two – The onset of sleep allows the heart rate and breathing pattern to be regular and the body temperature drops.
  • Stage Three and Four – The muscles are relaxed, blood pressure drops, breathing becomes slow, blood supply and muscles increase, hormones are released, tissue repair and growth occurs, REM sleep occurs, dreams occur and the body is restored with energy for the next day.

One-third of a person’s life is spent sleeping. Sleeping provides a wide range of health benefits including contributing to a healthy immune system. The entire process of sleep in naturally built in to every human being and occurs on a daily basis. Unless the person chooses to reduce the hours of sleep they experience. Working late, studying or dealing with an emergency are common reasons people choose to sleep less.

It is recommended to stay on a sleep schedule and rarely veer off track from it. This will keep the body clock on a rhythm which will help improve the quality of sleep. At times, sleep disorders and problems may occur. If signs and symptoms such as extreme fatigue during the day, difficulty staying awake, waking up choking or gasping for air arises, it is highly recommended that the person see a physician immediately for proper diagnosis.

Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, insomnia and narcolepsy can affect anyone at any age throughout a lifetime. Luckily there are treatments available and preventative measures that can help reduce the symptoms and even cure the sleep disorder. The human body will always require a daily sleep process and it is up to the person to care for themselves and allow themselves to sleep well.