Most people take a good night’s sleep for granted. Not everyone is so lucky. Others struggle to fall asleep or wake often during the night. While they face frustrating nights and sleepy days, they know they have a sleep problem. At the same time, many people think they are sleeping well when they in fact are not–a situation that may also have serious health consequences. Don’t lose another night of sleep…local help is available.
The Sleep Center at McDowell Hospital is prepared to diagnose and treat many types of sleep conditions in children and adults. Our experienced staff comes from different specialties to address the range of causes for sleep disorders. In addition to experienced staff, our center is fully equipped to conduct thorough sleep studies. Let us help you obtain the refreshing and essential sleep you need to live each day to the fullest.
You do not need a referral for a Sleep Center consultation. However, one may be required for some services so please share any symptoms or concerns with your primary care physician. If you have any questions, feel free to call us at 828-659-5216.
People who benefit from Sleep Center services experience a variety of different symptoms, the most frequent being:
- Snoring that is often loud
- Daytime fatigue and sleepiness
- Difficulty concentrating or memory lapses
- Morning headaches or dry mouth
- Change in personality such as moodiness or irritability
- Obesity or rapid weight gain
- Waking up feeling groggy, confused or like you didn’t sleep
Types of Sleep Disorders
Sleep disorders do not fall into one neat category; there are different types and they may impact anyone at any age. The good news is that most sleep disorders are treatable, preventing complications and giving you the vital sleep your body needs. Common sleep disorders include:
- Sleep apnea – the flow of oxygen is partially or completely blocked
- Snoring – especially loud snoring
- Insomnia – the inability to fall asleep or waking often during the night
- Periodic limb movement – such as restless leg syndrome
- Narcolepsy – excessive daytime sleepiness
- Circadian rhythm disorders – your internal clock is off balance; you’re awake or asleep at unusual times
- Parasomnias – nightmares, night terrors, sleep walking or talking, teeth grinding, bed wetting
The Sleep Center at McDowell Hospital offers a full range of diagnostic services and treatments. If you are concerned that you may have a sleep disorder, the first step is a thorough examination. While the initial evaluation may result in a diagnosis and treatment plan, many sleep disorders require additional tests for a proper diagnosis.
- Initial evaluation: We’ll ask questions about your sleep patterns, take your medical history and conduct a physical exam to assess general health, your upper airway and chest, and neck circumference. If you have a sleep partner, they’re invited to attend because they often contribute helpful insight into your sleep habits.
- Sleep study: Conducted overnight while you sleep in a private, comfortable room at the Sleep Center, a sleep study (also called polysomnography) measures how much and how well you sleep. The tests, which are painless, use sensors placed on your body to measure eye movements, heart rate, brain activity, blood pressure and the amount of oxygen in your blood. These tests are often critical for diagnosing sleep-related breathing disorders.
- Multiple sleep latency tests: Performed during the day at the Sleep Center, this test measures how long it takes you to fall asleep during the day.
- Maintenance of wakefulness tests: To measure your alertness and ability to stay awake during the day.
- Actigraphy: A wristwatch-like device worn for several days keeps track of when you sleep.
Your treatment plan depends on the diagnosis and the cause of your sleep disorder. It may include any of the following options:
- Lifestyle changes – such as losing weight and developing healthier sleeping habits
- Melatonin – the natural hormone produced by your body to make you sleepy
- Prescription medications
- Light therapy
- Oral appliances – such as a mouth guard
- CPAP – continuous positive airway pressure mask often helps people with sleep apnea
- Surgery – may be an option in cases where tissue growth or structures cause the problem
- Therapy – to address behavioral or emotional causes
Important Information About Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders and potentially one of the most serious. While it’s often associated with obesity, 30% of those diagnosed with sleep apnea are not overweight. The disruption of oxygen while you sleep may cause depression, anxiety, learning or memory difficulties and excessive daytime sleepiness. It may also result in high blood pressure and increase your risk of heart attack or stroke.
Skilled services in the Sleep Center at McDowell Hospital are provided by a multidisciplinary team of physicians and technicians experienced in the diverse aspects of sleep disorders:
- Registered polysomnographic technologists
- American Board of Sleep Medicine Diplomates
Appointments and Information
If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment at the Sleep Center, please call 828-659-5216, or contact us using our convenient online form.
Even though you do not need a referral, we encourage you to talk to your primary care provider about what is best for you.
Office hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
Extended hours as sleep studies are scheduled
The Sleep Center at McDowell Hospital
430 Rankin Dr.
Marion, NC 28752
How to Prepare for a Sleep Study
During your sleep study, you’ll stay in a private room that’s monitored from an adjacent control room by a trained sleep technologist. Expect to be at the Sleep Center for about eight to ten hours, unless additional tests have been ordered. A more accurate diagnosis will be obtained if you follow these steps before your sleep study:
- Diet: Do not drink any type of beverage containing caffeine on the afternoon or evening of your sleep study.
- Hair: Be sure that your hair is clean, dry and free of hair sprays, gels and oils because water-soluble paste will be used to secure electronic leads to your scalp. Following your sleep study, we will provide shampoo and soap so that you may wash the paste out of your hair.
- Clothing: Bring loose, comfortable clothing to sleep in.
- Pillow: Feel free to bring your own pillow from home.
- Medications: Bring all of your prescribed medications with you, even if you do not need to take them during your visit to the Sleep Center. In addition, bring over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol or antacids that you might normally take at night.
- Sleep Diary: If you received a sleep diary, please complete it for the days immediately prior to your sleep study and bring it with you.
- Smoking: Smoking is prohibited in McDowell Hospital. Please let us know if you feel you will have difficulty complying with this policy.