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Doc Talk | Sleep studies can tell a lot about someone's health

Doc Talk 4.26.18 Sleep StudyThumbnail

It's probably safe to say if there's one thing many of us complain about, it's not getting enough sleep.

Some just chalk it up to stress, but you may have a sleeping disorder, and that could lead to other health problems.

We spoke with a psychiatrist who runs and reviews sleep studies.

Those studies are usually done in jut one night, but he says they can tell him a lot about a person's health.

There's nothing like crawling into a nice cozy bed when you're feeling exhausted, but for some, sleep or an inability to sleep well just brings on anxiety.

"Those people generally feel very tired during the day, so that’s one of the primary reasons they come to us," said Dr. Kawish Garg. "We are looking at their breathing patterns. We are looking at their EKG, heart rhythm, pulse oxygen to see how much oxygen drop is happening."

If someone is pausing while breathing and not getting proper oxygen, they're usually diagnosed with sleep apnea.

"It can be very dangerous, especially the sleep apnea, and it can be very detrimental for the heart," said Dr. Kawish Garg.

He says it can lead to heart attacks, strokes or arrhythmias.

If you're diagnosed with sleep apnea, and it's severe, you'll need to come back once more to be fitted for CPAP device, which better helps you breathe.

"We will put them on a low pressure, and the night the technician will keep on adjusting the pressure to make sure their breathing is pretty even," said Dr. Kawish Garg.

There are other things Dr. Garg says they can see by doing a sleep study.

Sleep studies can also help them identify periodic limb movement when your legs move restlessly and parasomnia behaviors, like sleep talking and walking.

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