Casey L. Cochran, DO, a physician at St. Mary’s Family Medicine North, discusses sleep disorders, how they are diagnosed, and the importance of getting treatment.
Q. What is a sleep disorder and which are most common?
A. The International Classification of Sleep Disorders is made up of seven major categories, and within these seven categories, there are 60 specific sleep-related diagnoses. Many people are likely to be living with a sleep disorder of some kind. Some of the more common categories of a sleep disorder include forms of insomnia and sleep-related breathing disorders.
Q. What are the common indicators that you might have a sleep disorder and need to talk to your doctor?
A. Common signs of possible underlying sleep disorders include, but are not limited to, excessive daytime sleepiness, waking up feeling exhausted, loud snoring or gasping during sleep, fatigue or low energy during the day, and difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep.
Q. How is a sleep disorder diagnosed?
A. Sleep disorders may be diagnosed by a thorough history and physical exam performed by your physician. However, many times obtaining a sleep study will be recommended. Sleep studies now can be performed in multiple ways and locations, including at-home sleep studies.
Q. How are sleep disorders treated?
A. Sleep disorders are treated in many different ways, including prescription medication regimens, psychological therapy, and the use of assisted respiratory pressure machines, such as CPAPs.
Q. Why is it important to get a diagnosis?
A. Living with undiagnosed and untreated sleep disorders can lead to other significant health issues, from mental health issues to cardiovascular complications. It is very important that these disorders be treated to prevent serious health-related complications down the road.
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Cochran or another St. Mary’s Physician Associates physician, call 580-249-3782 or book online at stmarysphysicianassociates.com
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