Category Archives: Sleep Disorders

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We Need To Talk About Opioid-Induced Sleep Apnea

There is no denying that narcotic medications have allowed for much-needed relief for patients in debilitating pain. But there can also be no denying that there is a dark side to the skyrocketing rate of prescribed narcotics like hydrocodone, oxycontin, and fentanyl, especially when they’re consumed over a long period of time. The risk of addiction and dependency looms largest, but opioid therapies carry a range of other risks. Opioid-induced sleep apnea is one of them.

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New Year’s Resolutions: Get More Sleep, Lose More Weight

The last few days of 2016 are flying by, and that means that its time to turn our attention to the upcoming new year. For lots of us, that means making a New Year’s Resolution (or two, or ten). But when the excitement wanes, motivation can quickly follow, and before you know it, you’re back to your old habits. Don’t feel bad, though. Turns out, a scant 8% of resolvers end up achieving their goals, often before the champagne has a chance to go flat. All of the gym memberships, pricey organizers, and good intentions won’t matter if you don’t know how to keep your new year’s resolution.

Luckily, we have the answer, and it applies to any resolution you’re thinking of making. No matter what you vow to do when the year turns over, healthy sleep habits are the key to making it stick.

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winter-sleep-tips

Why you can’t sleep in cold weather – and how to fix it

Cold weather can bring insomnia with it — these winter sleep tips will have you sleeping and feeling better in no time.

Yesterday marked the first day of winter, an occasion that’s typically met with very little fanfare. After all, either you’re from somewhere that’s already been buried under snow and hitting record lows for weeks, or you’re a Texan.

But even we Texans have had our share of frigid weather, and more is on the horizon. And no matter where you live, when the temperature dips, it’s tougher to get a good night’s rest. We’ll tell you why that is, why good sleep is more important than ever in the winter months, and give you some winter sleep tips so you can get back on track.

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5 Facts About Sleep Health Every Veteran Should Know

Each year on November 11th, we celebrate Veterans Day — a day set aside to honor, celebrate, and express our gratitude for the men and women who place country above self daily. But as the day is winding down and many of us settle in for a good night’s rest, many of those same veterans won’t find it easy to sleep at all.

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Airing Surpasses Initial Fundraising Goal to Develop World’s First Maskless, Hoseless, Cordless Micro-CPAP

AiringmicroCPAP

 

Airing LLC quickly reaches its crowdfunding goal of $100,000 for its disposable micro-CPAP device. Within two hours of its the launch of today’s Indiegogo campaign, it had already surpassed its funding goal. And 16 hours into the campaign, it is at 277% of its goal—a whopping $277,319 (donated by 3,014 people).

Airing says its product will be “the world’s first hoseless, maskless, cordless micro-CPAP device.”

The timeline shared on its campaign page indicates the following:

  • 7/2015-3/2016: Build prototype for testing
  • 3/2016-1/2017: FDA clearance and insurance approval
  • 7/2017: Production and shipping of the product

Sleep is Likely A Missing Piece in the Alzheimer’s Disease Puzzle

Sleep & Alzheimer’s Dementia —

Scientists at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, have found compelling evidence that poor sleep—particularly a deficit of the deep, restorative slumber needed to hit the save button on memories—is a channel through which the beta-amyloid protein believed to trigger Alzheimer’s disease attacks the brain’s long-term memory.

“Our findings reveal a new pathway through which Alzheimer’s disease may cause memory decline later in life,” says UC Berkeley neuroscience professor Matthew Walker, senior author of the study published Monday in the journal Nature Neuroscience, in a release.

Excessive deposits of beta-amyloid are key suspects in the pathology of Alzheimer’s disease, a virulent form of dementia caused by the gradual death of brain cells. An unprecedented wave of aging baby boomers is expected to make Alzheimer’s disease, which has been diagnosed in more than 40 million people, one of the world’s fastest-growing and most debilitating public health concerns.

The good news about the findings, Walker says, is that poor sleep is potentially treatable and can be enhanced through exercise, behavioral therapy, and even electrical stimulation that amplifies brain waves during sleep, a technology that has been used successfully in young adults to increase their overnight memory.

“This discovery offers hope,” he says. “Sleep could be a novel therapeutic target for fighting back against memory impairment in older adults and even those with dementia.”

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The Silent Killer

It is said that Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a silent killer because it causes damage to your eyes, kidneys, heart, and brain, and in most cases this occurs without any symptoms. Elevated blood pressure is many times discovered during a routine medical office visit. Well, there is another silent killer and it’s called Sleep Apnea. Sleep apnea occurs when there is an obstruction in your airway due to relaxation of the soft tissue in the back of your throat. This obstruction causes your breathing to start and stop repeatedly. When this happens, you may have a dip in your oxygen level which then causes you to have less oxygen being sent to your organs such as your heart and brain.

Over the years, research has shown untreated sleep apnea is linked to many health problems such as high blood pressure, irregular heart beat, heart failure, diabetes, stroke, depression and obesity. One of these possible effects of untreated sleep apnea is atrial fibrillation. This is an irregular and fast heart beat that causes poor blood flow to your body. Atrial fibrillation can also lead to blood clots forming in the heart which may travel to other parts of the body.

There have been many cases where someone dies in their sleep due to cardiac arrest. What you don’t hear about is that it was most likely untreated sleep apnea causing this cardiac arrest. The scenario is this: the untreated sleep apnea caused an arrhythmia (such as atrial fibrillation), a clot formed, this clot travels to the heart causing ischemia, then a heart attack occurs. The patient dies in their sleep.

This is why I tell you sleep apnea is a silent killer. The symptoms associated with sleep apnea are excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue, snoring, headaches, abrupt awakenings, and attention problems. But some patients report not having any symptoms yet when they are tested due to having high blood pressure, for example, they do have sleep apnea despite not having symptoms.

If you have high blood pressure, that in itself is a reason to get screened for sleep apnea, even if you don’t have symptoms. It’s better to know if you have sleep apnea and it is treatable. I and our team in our clinic want to help as many patients with sleep apnea get treated and go on to live their lives as fully and healthy as possible. Let’s stop this silent killer sleep apnea. Get screened.

Thanks for reading this months blog and we look forward to serving you.