February 13, 2013
Sleep problems can be much more than an annoyance. Schedule an appointment for a sleep study and get help from Ruth Sohl-Kreiger, Nurse Practitioner, who recently began seeing patients at SCRMC for sleep issues. She comes to us from The Lung Clinic and will work closely with patients and our program's Medical Director, Dr. John Miller to assess sleep issues for patients. There is help and it's here at St. Croix Regional Medical Center.
According to the program’s Clinical Coordinator, Rick Johnson, RRT, untreated sleep disorders can increase the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, and other medical conditions. They also have been linked to increased injury risk due to falls and car accidents. “In general, people aren't aware of their breathing and movements while sleeping,” Johnson explained,” and as a result, they may never consider talking to a health care provider about sleep—and health-related issues that might be linked to their sleep problems.
St. Croix Regional Medical Center’s new sleep rooms are more spacious, very quiet, and furnished much like one’s home bedroom, says Johnson. In addition to offering patients an even more comfortable and private setting, the exhanced space has enabled the program to expand the services they offer.
Johnson suggests talking with any health care provider if you snore regularly or feel very tired while at work or school most days of the week. “You also may want to seek help,” he cautioned, “if you often have trouble falling or staying asleep, or if you wake and can’t go back to sleep, these can be signs of a sleep disorder.”
Administered by Registered Sleep Technologists, sleep studies are typically done on a Monday, Wednesday, or Thursday with patients checking in between 8:00 and 9:00 PM and staying until the following morning. Some studies, for symptoms of narcolepsy for example, are carried out during the day. Wait times are minimal, says Johnson, and referrals are accepted from any health care provider.