Sleep is essential to a person’s overall health and well being, but many people suffer from sleep disorders that wreak havoc on their lives. Insomnia, sleep apnea, shift work sleep disorders, and a multitude of other concerns can cause a person to seek help in diagnosing their problem and finding a treatment that will help them get much needed restorative sleep. Sleep centers are facilities where people can go to have their sleep pattern or behavior observed and assessed by medical professionals. Most communities have several sleep centers for patients to choose from, these centers can be independently owned and operated or they may be part of a hospital or health care system. Larger cities might have dozens of sleep centers, for example Las Vegas, Dallas, Tampa, Seattle all have many sleep centers.
When a person goes to a doctor for help with a sleeping disorder, the doctor will likely refer them for a sleep study, these studies record what happens to a person when they are sleeping, the studies are then analyzed by a specialist and a treatment plan is formulated. Sleep studies are conducted in facilities called sleep centers, these centers have private rooms for each patient that looks like a normal bedroom, but these rooms also contain sophisticated medical and audio-visual equipment which technicians will utilize to observe the patient during the study.
WebMD outlines the most common sleep studies as:
- Polysomnogram: This test records brain activity, eye movement, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, heart rate and rhythm, breathing rate and rhythm, the flow of air through the mouth and nose as well as body muscle, chest, and belly movements.
- Multiple Sleep Latency Test: This test is used to determine how long a patient takes to fall asleep and whether or not they enter a REM sleep pattern
- Maintenance of Wakefulness Test: This test is used to measure if a patient can stay awake during a time when they are normally expected to be awake
Although sleep centers are medical facilities, they understand that a comfortable environment is more conducive to sleep than a clinical environment. Most sleep center patient rooms look like a guest room at a friend’s home or a hotel room. Visibly absent from these rooms are televisions and radios, the technicians need to record how a patient sleeps without those kinds of external stimulus.
Sleep centers in Las Vegas and the rest of the country can be found by asking a physician what center they recommend or by doing a simple Internet search.
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