Sleep Health

  • Stress Negatively Impacting the Quality of Sleep for Half of Americans, Finds ResMed Survey

    Original Article: Sleep Review | Posted by Sree Roy | Mar 20, 2021 | Demographics

    For half of Americans, stress over the past year is negatively impacting the quality of their sleep, according to the results of a nationwide survey of 1,000 adults commissioned by ResMed. What’s more, many are ignoring sleep challenges that could point to a larger underlying health concern.

    ResMed published the survey in conjunction with National Sleep Awareness Week (March 14-20) and World Sleep Day (March 19), and as part of Sleep for a Better Tomorrow, an education and outreach initiative to build awareness of the critical role good sleep plays in physical and mental health—and how to get our best sleep.

    “COVID-19 has impacted all aspects of our lives, including our sleep health, leading many people to struggle to get the recommended 7 to 9 hours of sleep at night,” says Carlos M. Nunez, MD, chief medical officer for ResMed, in a release.

    Beyond the pervasive effects of stress, the survey found the impacts on sleep vary across gender and working arrangements.

    • Thirty-five percent of women reported worse sleep quality in the past year compared to just 26% of men. Women selected stress and anxiety as the most significant impacts on their sleep.
    • More individuals working from home reported improved sleep quality since the pandemic began vs those who haven’t worked from home (39% vs 21%).
    • Across all respondents, more than one-third say they are having a harder time falling asleep, and nearly one-third say they are sleeping less over the last year, and one-quarter started taking naps more often.

    [RELATED: How Abnormal Sleep Architecture Can Be a Predictor of Stress Vulnerability]

    Snoring & Sleep Apnea

    The survey revealed that more than one in two Americans say they snore, or a bed partner has told them they snore. But 78% of those who snore aren’t concerned it could be related to an underlying health condition, despite snoring being a top symptom of sleep apnea. Additionally, nearly half of survey respondents said their doctor had not asked them about their sleep quality, reinforcing the importance of consumers being aware of the potential health impacts of poor sleep and acting on key sleep apnea symptoms such as snoring.

    “While data show that stress and worry are key factors impacting many people’s sleep, now is an opportunity for everyone to take measure of all of the factors that could be impacting the quality of their sleep, which could include sleep disorders that can have negative long-term impacts to overall health,” Nunez says.

    “Sleep apnea can impact all types of people from all walks of life, and while some people are more prone to have sleep apnea, it does not discriminate. If you snore, have been told you stop breathing in your sleep, or feel tired each day despite getting enough hours of sleep, ask your doctor if sleep apnea—which is 100% treatable at home—could be the cause.”

    The survey was conducted in February 2021 among 1,000 individuals 18 and older in the United States. The survey was fielded using Qualtrics Insights Platform, and the panel was sourced from Lucid.

  • Insomnia, Disrupted Sleep Linked to Severe COVID-19

    Original Article Posted by Sleep Review Staff | Mar 23, 2021 | InsomniaSleep & the Body

    coronavirus

    Insomnia, disrupted sleep, and daily burnout are linked to a heightened risk of not only becoming infected with coronavirus, but also having more severe disease and a longer recovery period, suggests an international study of healthcare workers, published in the online journal BMJ Nutrition Prevention & Health.

    Every 1-hour increase in the amount of time spent asleep at night was associated with 12% lower odds of becoming infected with COVID-19, the findings indicate.

    Disrupted/insufficient sleep and work burnout have been linked to a heightened risk of viral and bacterial infections, but it’s not clear if these are also risk factors for COVID-19, say the researchers.

    To explore this further, they drew on the responses to an online survey for healthcare workers repeatedly exposed to patients with COVID-19 infection, such as those working in emergency or intensive care, and so at heightened risk of becoming infected themselves.

    The survey ran from 17 July to 25 September 2020, and was open to healthcare workers in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK, and the USA.

    Respondents provided personal details on lifestyle, health, and use of prescription meds and dietary supplements plus information on the amount of sleep they got at night and in daytime naps over the preceding year; any sleep problems; burnout from work; and workplace exposure to COVID-19 infection.

    Some 2884 healthcare workers responded, 568 of whom had COVID-19, ascertained either by self-reported diagnostic symptoms and/or a positive swab test result.

    Infection severity was defined as: very mild – no or hardly any symptoms; mild – fever with or without cough, requiring no treatment; moderate – fever, respiratory symptoms and/or pneumonia; severe – breathing difficulties and low oxygen saturation; and critical – respiratory failure requiring mechanical assistance and intensive care.

    The amount of reported nightly sleep averaged under 7 hours, but more than 6. After accounting for potentially influential factors, every extra hour of sleep at night was associated with 12% lower odds of COVID-19 infection.

    But an extra hour acquired in daytime napping was associated with 6% higher odds, although this association varied by country.

    Around 1 in 4 (137;24%) of those with COVID-19 reported difficulties sleeping at night compared with around 1 in 5 (21%;495) of those without the infection.

    And 1 in 20 (5%;28) of those with COVID-19 said they had 3 or more sleep problems, including difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep, or needing to use sleeping pills on 3 or more nights of the week, compared with 65 (3%) of those without the infection.

    Compared with those who had no sleep problems, those with three had 88% greater odds of COVID-19 infection.

    Proportionally more of those with COVID-19 reported daily burnout than did those without the infection: 31 (5.5%) compared with 71 (3%).

    Compared with those who didn’t report any burnout, those for whom this was a daily occurrence were more than twice as likely to have COVID-19. Similarly, these respondents were also around 3 times as likely to say that their infection was severe and that they needed a longer recovery period.

    These findings held true, irrespective of the frequency of COVID-19 workplace exposure.

    This is an observational study, and as such, can’t establish cause. And the researchers acknowledge several limitations to their study.

    These include subjective assessment of exposure levels, sleep issues, and infection severity, all of which may have been incorrectly remembered. And the sample included only cases of very mild to moderately severe COVID-19.

    By way of an explanation for their findings, the researchers note: “The mechanism underlying these associations remains unclear, but it has been hypothesized that lack of sleep and sleep disorders may adversely influence the immune system by increasing proinflammatory cytokines and histamines.”

    And they point to studies linking burnout to a heightened risk of colds and flu as well as long term conditions, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal disease and death from all causes.

    “These studies have suggested that burnout may directly or indirectly predict illnesses by occupational stress impairing the immune system and changing cortisol levels,” they write.

    And they conclude:”We found that lack of sleep at night, severe sleep problems and high level of burnout may be risk factors for COVID-19 in frontline [healthcare workers]. Our results highlight the importance of healthcare professionals’ well-being during the pandemic.”

  • Did You Know, Lack of Sleep Can Impact Your Vision?

    Are you getting enough sleep? If not, you could be impacting the health of your eyes. At Sleep Apnea Dentists of New England, we realize that today’s fast-paced world typically results in insufficient sleep. Trying to squeeze in a good night’s rest can be difficult with everything that needs to be completed in the course of one day. Dark circles are a dead give away that you are not getting enough sleep, but your overall eye health is being affected more than you know.

    Tired Eyes from Lack of Sleep

    Vision Problems Related to Poor Sleep

    Studies have proven that the average person requires 6-8 hours of sleep per night in order to replenish. If you are getting less than six hours of sleep, your eyes do not get the restoration they need. Some of the following warning signs are indication that your eyes are not getting enough rest:

    • Eye spasms. Ever get that rapid twitching of your eye? Those involuntary spasms are called myokymia. They are involuntary eyelid muscle spasms. They are harmless, but they are a good warning sign that you should be paying more attention to getting a good night’s rest.
    • Broken blood vessels in the eye.  Though they are usually not painful, the “bloodied eye” look is definitely not very appealing.
    • Dry eye. When your eyes are unable to properly lubricate overnight, you may get dry eyes. Dry eyes cause light sensitivity, itching, redness, and sometimes even blurred vision.
    • A more serious eye condition as the result of sleep deprivation is known as Anterior Ischemic Optic Neuropathy (AION). This is typical for middle-aged individuals who suffer from sleep apnea. Over time, damage to the optic nerve from insufficient blood supply can eventually cause vision loss.

    Better Nights for Better Vision

    Try to make a routine plan for preparing for bed at night. If falling asleep is a daunting task, here are some suggestions:

    • Drink chamomile tea approximately 30 minutes before bedtime.
    • Read a book for fifteen minutes before falling asleep.
    • Do not exercise just before going to bed. When you exercise, you raise your metabolic rate and falling asleep will be more difficult.
    • Reduce stress and decompress with essential lavender oil and positive messages to yourself.
    • A lukewarm bath with some aromatherapy candles and a good book is a great way to unwind your body and mind.

    Your eyes are not the only muscle that suffers from insufficient sleep. There are several additional health risks associated with poor sleep. Visit our website for a more extensive list of health risks associated with poor sleep.

    Meanwhile, it is important to remember that your eyes are working all day long. Sleep is the only time they have to restore and regenerate. Therefore, it is extremely important to make sure they get their rest so you may continue to enjoy healthy vision.

    Want to learn more about better nights for better days? Contact Sleep Apnea Dentists of New England today!

  • Celebrate World Sleep Day on March 13 to Advance Sleep Health Worldwide

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    World Sleep Society
    +1.507.316.0084
    info@worldsleepsociety.org
    http://worldsleepday.org/

    CELEBRATE WORLD SLEEP DAY® ON MARCH 13 TO ADVANCE SLEEP HEALTH WORLDWIDE

    ROCHESTER, MN – January 2, 2020—World Sleep Society is issuing a global call to action about the importance of healthy sleep. Friday, March 13, 2020 is the 13th annual World Sleep Day®. Created and hosted by World Sleep Society, World Sleep Day is an internationally recognized awareness event bringing researchers, health professionals and patients together to recognize sleep and its important impact on our health.

    World Sleep Day 2020 will incorporate the slogan, ‘Better Sleep, Bette Life, Better Planet,’ highlighting sleep’s important place as a pillar of health, allowing for better decision making and cognitive understanding in even big issues, such as our planet. This focus is purposefully broad in meaning, surrounding the message that quality of life can be improved with healthy sleep. Conversely, when sleep fails, health declines, decreasing quality of life. Sound sleep is a treasured function. World Sleep Society has compiled ten tips for healthier sleep. These recommendations for children and adults can be viewed on worldsleepday.org under resources.

    Dr. Liborio Parrino is Chair of the World Sleep Day Committee. Dr. Parrino expresses, “If we really want to contribute to the planet’s survival, a wise activity is to extend the period of our sleep time. That’s why this year’s World Sleep Day slogan connects good sleep to improved planet health.” Increased sleep periods mean less consumption of fuel, electricity, food and oxygen (breathing is attenuated during sleep). Better quality sleep also reduces the risk of labor-related and road accidents, promotes the secretion of melatonin and protects the natural circadian clock, which can prevent premature aging in humans. Dr. Parrino adds, “Extending our sleep period also improves our mental and body performances during the day and, last but not least, enhances our dreaming experience, as REM stages are mostly concentrated in the final portion of sleep, which is often curtailed by the urging rules of modern life.”

    Phyllis C. Zee, MD, PhD, Professor of Neurology and Director of the Center for Circadian and Sleep Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine goes on to suggest, “Actions we can take include prioritizing sleep with exercise and nutrition, maintaining regular sleep and wake timing, averaging 7-9 hours of sleep duration and if suffering from a chronic sleep disturbance, by discussing sleep with your doctor.” Over the past decade, there have been major advances in our understanding of neural mechanisms, linking the important relationship between sleep and cognitive health. Mounting evidence indicates that sleep is an active process in which recently-encoded memories are consolidated and transferred for long-term storage. Dr. Zee adds, “Sleep enhances the ability to remove waste products from the brain—which can harm brain function.”

    Professor Fang Han, MD of The Sleep Center, Peking University People’s Hospital in Beijing, China states, “Sleep is important for one’s cognitive health. Sleep can restore your brain function in many aspects, such as learning, memory, and mood.” Sleep disorders may cause impairment of a person’s oxygen supply, disturb your immunological system, or damage your brain structure. Dr. Han states, “World Sleep Day is an opportunity to be aware, sleep regularly, sleep enough, and treat sleep disorders.”

    CALL TO ACTION

    To participate in World Sleep Day, consider:

    • Organizing an event to create excitement and generate interest in World Sleep Day.
    • Circulating the official press release with sleep experts and local media.
    • Distributing sleep patient literature such as booklets, leaflets and newsletters.
    • Finding other ideas at worldsleepday.org.
    • Spreading the word on social media about #WorldSleepDay.

    More information can be viewed on worldsleepday.org/get-involved/plan.

    GLOBAL PARTNERSHIPS

    The 13th Annual World Sleep Day has partnered with Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global and AmLife. More sponsors will be included before March.

    Arianna Huffington, founder and CEO of Thrive Global says, “Sleep is central to every aspect of our well-being—our physical health, our mental health, our productivity and our decision-making. Our world is facing huge crises on multiple fronts, and we need all the resilience, wisdom and sound decision-making we can muster. We can’t take care of our world if we don’t take care of ourselves—and that begins with sleep.”

    Mr. Lew Mun Yee, the founder of AmLife states, “AmLife is fully devoted in the noble mission of World Sleep Society in advocating better-quality sleep in mankind. AmLife proudly joins the call for Better Sleep, Better Life, Better Planet, this year’s World Sleep Day theme. AmLife’s new tagline—Life. Redefined.—dovetails the 2020 theme. With better quality of sleep, life certainly can be redefined.”

    CONTACTS

    Allan O’Bryan, World Sleep Society Executive Director: obryan@worldsleepsociety.org
    Dr. Liborio Parrino, 2020 World Sleep Day Committee Chair: liborio.parrino@unipr.it

    ###

    About World Sleep Society

    World Sleep Day is organized by World Sleep Society, an international association whose mission is to advance sleep health worldwide. WorldSleep Society hosts a biennial scientific congress on sleep medicine aiming to globally connect sleep professionals and researchers to advance current knowledge on sleep. A job board has also been created for sleep medicine professionals on http://www.worldsleepsociety.org. Follow the excitement on Twitter @_WorldSleep and facebook.com/WASMF.

    About AmLife International

    AmLife established its sleep healthcare business to help consumers achieve optimal health in their daily sleep as well as enjoy the wonderful health lifting and recuperative effects of its products. AmLife has pioneered the combination of bedding equipment and Japan’s state-of-the-art technology to expand the unlimited potential of the sleep healthcare market, providing a brand-new health solution for modern-day people, which they can use every day.

  • Frightening Things Sleep Loss Can Do to Your Body

    Original Post by: Sara Middleton, staff writer | December 18, 2019

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    sleep-loss

    The sleep loss some people willingly subject themselves to is doing the exact opposite of helping them gain an academic “edge,” and is in no way beneficial for stress management (NaturalHealth365) Calling all students, board executives, parents with busy families, or any other hard-working individuals: pulling all-nighters is officially no longer something to brag about!

    Case in point? Research from institutions like Texas A&M College of Medicine and St. Lawrence University finds that consistently pulling all-nighters is associated with a lower grade point average – in addition to increased anxiety, impaired performance, and a myriad of other problems.

    Pulling all-nighters will lower your grade point average and increase the risk of weight gain

    Poor grades and a low-grade point average (GPA) can be big issues, but they’re certainly not the only ones caused by staying up all night. According to research, pulling all-nighters or consistently getting less than 6 hours of sleep per night increases the risk of other serious and undesirable health consequences, including:

    • Weight gain
    • Cancer
    • Heart disease
    • Accidents
    • Depression and anxiety (even just one sleepless night can raise anxiety levels by as much as 30%, according to a recent study from the University of California Berkeley published in Nature Human Behavior)

    Of course, we’d be remiss to just harp on the negatives. For example, the same UC Berkeley study we just mentioned also determined that deep non-rapid eye movement sleep (the non-dreaming stage) can literally rewire brain circuitry in such a way as to decrease anxiety, as well as lower blood pressure and heart rate.

    We also know that consistently getting a sufficient amount of sleep (that’s 7 to 9 hours per night for adults) increases our mood and productivity, reduce our risk for diabetes, helps us manage stress, and strengthens our immune system to help us avoid getting sick.

    Psst: teens need about 8 to 10 hours of sleep, and kids between the ages of 6 and 12 need about 9 to 12!

    Do NOT ignore the health dangers linked to toxic indoor air.  These chemicals – the ‘off-gassing’ of paints, mattresses, carpets and other home/office building materials – increase your risk of headaches, dementia, heart disease and cancer.

    Get the BEST indoor air purification system – at the LOWEST price, exclusively for NaturalHealth365 readers.  I, personally use this system in my home AND office.  Click HERE to order now – before the sale ends.

    Struggling with sleep apnea or insomnia? Here are three natural tips for combating sleep deprivation

    If you have a hard time falling and/or staying asleep, you’re in good (albeit tired) company. According to the Sleep Health Foundation, 1 out of 3 people have at least mild insomnia.

    But popping a sleeping pill – whether over-the-counter or prescription – doesn’t work long-term…and, of course, poses the risk of dependency and adverse side effects.

    So, how can you ease your mind and get to sleep better without becoming reliant on drugs? Previously, we’ve shared some helpful tips for improving your sleep naturally in our NaturalHealth365 podcast.  But, for a brief refresher, here are three simple strategies you can start implementing tonight:

    1. Turn down the temp. Sleep research indicates that an ideal bedroom temperature is between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit (ca. 20 °C). Surprisingly cool, but it seems to be ideal for helping your body create melatonin, a major sleep-wake cycle hormone. Plus, we all know how hard it is to fall asleep on a hot summer’s night when the A/C breaks!
    2. Power down your devices. Dim your lights and avoid using televisions, cell phones, tablets, and laptops about an hour before bed. Hard to do? Sure. But if the trade-off is better sleep and better health, it definitely seems like a challenge worth taking on.
    3. Implement a relaxing bedtime routine. Instead of scrolling on social media, try kicking back with a book or journal, deep breathing in a hot shower, or testing out that new DIY facial mask you’ve been wanting to try. Practice regular self-soothing acts that help your body wind down.

    Sources for this article include:

    Livescience.com
    Sleephealthfoundation.org
    Sleepadvisor.org
    Sciencedaily.com
    Sciencedaily.com
    Berkeley.edu
    ADAA.org
    Washingtonpost.com
    Healthfinder.gov

  • Better Nights for Better Days

    Better Nights for Better Days

    What is Better Nights for Better Days?

    Here at Sleep Apnea Dentists of New England, our goal for 2020 is to help sleep apnea sufferers experience better nights of sleep. When our bodies are able to experience good sleep, our days become better. Everybody understands the correlation between a good night’s sleep and our ability to function throughout the day.

    Just like Nancy, a good night’s sleep is a must – in order to survive the daily grind of work and life. If the body does not get enough quality sleep, that is problematic. What many people do not realize is that a lack of sleep, on a consistent basis, comes with long-term health consequences that include:

    • Irritability
    • Memory Loss
    • High Blood Pressure
    • Obesity
    • Diabetes
    • Hypertension
    • Heart Disease
    • Alzheimer’s
    • Shortened Life Expectancy
    • Weakened Immunity
    • Anxiety
    • Depression

    How to Get A Better Night’s Sleep

    Here at Sleep Apnea Dentists of New England, we treat people who have a diagnosis of Sleep Apnea and have or have not tried using the CPAP machine.

    While we can’t give you back the sleep you have lost, we can work with you and your physician to help you finally get the rest you (and perhaps your bed partner) so richly deserve. Our promise is to work hard to help alleviate the symptoms and limitations caused by this serious medical condition. We want to improve your quality of life by increasing every hour of restful sleep you get.

    Follow #BetterNightsForBetterDays

    Use the hashtag #betternightsforbetterdays when you wish to learn more about sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, CPAP, oral sleep appliances, and quality sleep.

    Sleep loss and sleep disorders are among the most common yet frequently overlooked and treatable health problems. Follow our hashtag and discover the correlation between sleep and your health. With improved sleep comes improved health. When your health improves, so does your quality of life.

    Make a New Year’s resolution to your own well-being. Connect with us today and start your New Year with a new YOU!


    What have you got to lose? GETTING quality sleep and life is definitely worth the gain!