Getting an adequate amount of high-quality rest is one of the pillars of good health. Sleep is essential for both your mental and physical well-being. Unfortunately, all of us suffer disruptions to our sleep from time to time. Things like stress, a busy schedule, or jetlag can all interfere with the amount of rest you get. But how can you tell if your sleep problems are not just the result of normal, everyday life? In this blog post, we’ll discuss some signs that indicate you may have a sleep disorder and that you should consult a doctor about your problem.
You Are Always Tired Despite Getting 7 – 8 Hours of Sleep
Most adults need 7 – 8 hours of sleep each night in order to function and feel their best. If you are in the habit of getting that much sleep, but you still always feel tired, you may have a sleep disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). It interferes with breathing at night and can affect the quality of your sleep more than it affects the quantity of your sleep.
Your Partner Complains About Your Snoring
Because sleep apnea interferes with your breathing, it might lead to snoring. This type of snoring is different from what might occur occasionally as a result of allergies or being extra-tired. OSA-related snoring is usually quite loud and very frequent. It may be accompanied by noticeable pauses in breathing throughout the night.
Daily Activities Are Difficult for You
A sleep disorder can have a drastic impact on your ability to carry out everyday tasks. For example, you might:
- Find it difficult to concentrate at work or school
- Have slower reaction times when you are driving
- Struggle to stay awake while you are reading or watching TV
- Lack the energy to exercise or engage in recreational activities with your family
Adjustments to Your Sleep Routine Do Not Seem to Help
In some cases, difficulties sleeping might be due to missteps in your sleep routine. For example, staying up too late, consuming caffeine too late in the day, or having an uncomfortable mattress can all interfere with sleep. However, if you continue to struggle with daily tiredness even after you adjust your sleep routine, it is possible that you have a sleep disorder.
A Sleep Journal Reveals a Pattern of Low-Quality Sleep
Keeping track of your sleep can help both you and your doctor analyze the possibility that you have a sleep disorder. Your sleep journal can include things like:
- Bedtimes and wake times
- How you feel each morning
- Adjustments to your sleep habits and their impact
- Readouts from a fitness tracker (like a Fitbit or Apple Watch) about the quality and quantity of your sleep
Sleep is vital for your overall health and daily quality of life! If you believe you have a sleep disorder, consult with your doctor right away. They will arrange for you to undergo testing so you can receive diagnosis and treatment ASAP.
Dr. Keith Hollinger is an experienced dentist who specializes in providing sleep apnea therapy. He is a proud member of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. If you believe you may have a sleep disorder, Dr. Hollinger can help you arrange for testing and educate you about your treatment options. To learn more about him and his services, contact our team at 860-430-5687.