Sleep Doctors: What You Need to Know Before Visiting One

Exactly what is a sleep doctor? Is there such a person?

It is no joke to go through the week with inadequate hours of sleep. Not only will it affect your energy but your cognition as well.

If you are having troubles getting to dreamland, then you might need help from a sleep doctor.

What is a sleep doctor?

A sleep doctor is an expert in treating disorders that affect sleep. These can be an ENT-related problem like obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) or insomnia. Besides ears, nose, and throat (ENT) or Otolaryngology problems, they can also treat respiratory tract, heart, or nervous system issues.

In Australia, institutions like the Australasian Sleep Association, Woolclock Institute of Medical Research, and the Australian Medical Association offer courses for sleep medicine.

Some individuals also train to become sleep technologists. They perform studies on people who are having troubles with sleeping. To become a licensed Sleep Technologist, they need to complete a Sleep Technology Approved Resource (STAR) Program. Click here Malouf Medical

What is a sleep study?

If left untreated, your sleep issues may affect the other areas of your health.

When you first consult with a sleep doctor, he or she will ask about your symptoms and habits. You should disclose your sleeping habits, schedules, and ticks. Therefore, before visiting the sleep doctor, list those stuff down.

You can also ask your partner if you have one—ask them if you snore loudly or grind your teeth.

Scheduling a sleep study

So, your doctor provides a snoring treatment after you disclose your symptoms. What if it does not work? Most of the time, if this is the case, they will advise you to undergo a sleep study.

There are four types of sleep study:

  1. Home Sleep Test – This is for sleep apnoea patients. The sleep doctors instruct them to use a certain device at home to measure airflow, breathing effort, and blood oxygen saturation.
  2. Polysomnogram (PSG) – This covers all sleep issues, including sleep apnoea, parasomnia, insomnia, and so on.
  3. Maintenance of Wakefulness Test (MWT) – This measures the patient’s ability to stay awake during the day.
  4. Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT) – A study conducted during the day where the sleep doctors assess your sleepiness. They also use this to test the effectiveness of the breathing treatment for disorders.

What is a sleep clinic?

The sleep clinic is where sleep doctors monitor their patients during a sleep study. If they cannot properly assess the issue in a patient’s waking state, they advise the patients to stay overnight in a sleep clinic.

The environment in a sleep clinic is akin to a hotel or accommodation. It’s designed that way so the patients can fall asleep faster. So, there is a couple of comfortable beds for the patients. The sleep doctors use machines to assess the patient’s heart rate or brain activity, among other factors.

Other types of specialists who can help you

Indeed, sleep doctors can help you solve your sleep problems. However, in case there’s no one available in your area, these professionals can also help you:

  • Primary Care Doctors
  • Neurologists
  • ENT specialists
  • Psychiatrists

Are you having sleep aponea or breathing concerns?

You deserve shut-eyes. C’mon, you work so hard.

Find a reliable sleep doctor today. Start at Malouf Medical.