‘Falling Back’ to Sleep

October 22, 2012

On Sunday (November 4) at 2 a.m. Michigan residents will join millions of others across the country and observe Daylight Saving Time by turning their clocks back one hour.  When we awaken Sunday morning, we will probably feel restless because our bodies are still on the ‘old’ time.  But a couple of days after that, most of us will begin to feel ‘back to normal,’ that is until next March when we ‘spring’ forward and lose that hour of sleep.  

However, for those with sleep disorders, these transitions of ‘falling back’ and ‘springing forward’ are more than a mere nuisance.  A few sleep disorders are in fact potentially life threatening, but the majority, some 95% go undiagnosed and untreated.  As a sleep-deprived society that views sleep as ‘optional,’ we need to change our attitudes about sleep.  Our bodies depend upon it. 

Statistics underscore that message:
  • 10% of the general population have chronic insomnia
  • 1 in 5 drivers admits to falling asleep while driving
  • 1 in 3 pilots admits to falling asleep while flying
  • 25% of adult males in the U.S. have episodes of sleep apnea 
  • 25 to 40% of children diagnosed with ADD/ADHD have some form of sleep disorder
Sleep physicians believe that their patients' sleep habits show up as symptoms while they are awake,” says Julie Higgs, sleep program manager for Bronson Battle Creek.  “With inadequate sleep, a person may become fatigued and drowsy; even complain about lack of energy.”  

Sleep can be considered a 'change of shifts.’ There is the 'awake' day brain and the 'sleeping' night brain.  The transition or ‘shift change’ from wakefulness to sleep normally takes approximately 10 to 20 minutes.  The body needs time to properly shut down the 'awake' brain and activate the sleep cycles. 
 
“Many people with sleep disorders tend to rationalize their symptoms,” says Higgs.  “They believe fatigue is just part of growing older. Others think they are tired all the time because they are working too hard.  Sleep issues are persistently ignored.  Sleep studies can help identify the problem early.”

Children are not usually seen as having the potential for sleep disorders.  However, recent studies by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine have found that a number of children may have been misdiagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) when they actually have sleep apnea.  That is due to daytime symptoms common in both disorders, including behavioral problems, difficulty in concentrating, and hyperactivity.  Some sleep specialists believe that any child diagnosed with ADHD should be evaluated for potential sleep disorders before they are put on medication.  

The Bronson Battle Creek Sleep Center is one of the largest sleep sites in Southwest Michigan.  Though state-of-the-art clinically, it also offers eight large, comfortable patient rooms similar to hotel accommodations with queen-sized beds, TV, and private bathroom and shower facilities.  

Formerly housed in the Fieldstone Center at Bronson Battle Creek, the center is located in a restful area on the south side of Battle Creek near the corner of B Drive South and M-66. 

The BBC Sleep Center meets the needs of its customers by offering flexible hours, conducting sleep studies five days a week, including both daytime and nighttime so those who work nights can be tested during their regular sleep times.  Pediatric sleep testing and services are also available. 

The Sleep Center director is a board-certified sleep physician.  The highly skilled and experienced professional staff includes registered polysomnographic sleep technologists, and a registered electroencephalographic (EEG) technologist.

BBC Sleep Center is one of only a select few sleep labs in Michigan accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM).  AASM center accreditation reflects a commitment to ensure that sleep disorder patients receive the highest quality of care.

If you have concerns about whether you or your partner has a sleep disorder, contact your healthcare provider for a referral.  Or, if you just have questions, please feel free to call the Sleep Center at (269) 441-9082.

Don’t wait until next spring when the clocks are turned forward an hour to do something about your sleep.  Remember, ‘if you don’t snooze, you lose’ and it may be more than an hour’s sleep.

Bronson Battle Creek is a 218-bed hospital that provides full outpatient and inpatient acute care including robotic surgery, diagnostics, and rehabilitation services; 100% all private rooms.  It also offers world-class diagnostic capabilities including PET/CT imaging, freestanding ‘open’ and traditional MRI, CT (16- and 64-slice), and 3.0 Tesla MRI.  Bronson Battle Creek has been recognized nationally as one of the safest hospitals, and has been a leader in the development of electronic health records as evidenced by multiple honors as one of America’s ‘most wired’ and ‘most wireless’ hospitals. The Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons recognizes the Bronson Battle Creek Cancer Care Center as a Comprehensive Community Cancer Program, and the only hospital in Michigan to receive the CoC’s Outstanding Achievement Award three times in a row. Specialty services include inpatient behavioral health, the county’s largest accredited sleep center, and a wound-healing center with hyperbaric oxygen therapy.  For nine years, Bronson Healthcare has been included on Working Mother magazine’s 100 Best Companies list as a leading family friendly employer.


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