At UConn Health, we recognize that good sleep is essential to good health. UConn’s multidisciplinary Sleep Disorders Center offers state-of-the-art care to evaluate and treat sleep disorders in adults and children.
Patients receive a comprehensive sleep evaluation with diagnostic equipment in a restful atmosphere. Referring physicians receive a timely interpretation and recommendation, with options, for treatment.
Common Sleep Disorders
- Insomnia – difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Restless Leg Syndrome – burning or crawling sensation in the legs
- Narcolepsy – “sleep attacks” that can occur at any time
- Sleep Disorders in Children
- Sleepwalking – walking while asleep
- Night Terrors – awakening from sleep in a terrified state
- Difficulty Falling Asleep
- Sleep Apnea – disruption of breathing during sleep
Types of Sleep Studies
A nocturnal sleep study, or polysomnogram, is a recording that measures various physiologic parameters used to identify sleep stages and possible sleep disorders. The activities recorded during sleep include brain waves (EEG), eye movements, muscle activity (EMG), heart rate, snoring, among others. The application of small electrodes and sensors are used to record this information into a computer for later analysis. Generally, patients arrive approximately 2 hours before their “usual” bedtime to prepare for their study. Testing usually lasts from 8 to 10 hours.
Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT)
Patients may undergo an additional test called a MSLT. This test is generally performed in the morning after a full night polysomnogram. This means that patients will need to remain at the center for most of the next day. This test consists of a series of brief naps at 2-hour intervals. The MSLT is designed to evaluate the degree of daytime sleepiness and fatigue in subjects referred to the center.
Titration Studies (CPAP/Bi-Level)
Nasal continuous positive airway pressure (nCPAP) is the most commonly utilized treatment for obstructive sleep apnea. A standard CPAP unit delivers a constant flow of air during inspiration and expiration through a small nasal mask. Some patients may not tolerate standard CPAP and may benefit from a bi-level sleep study. Bi-level units often improve compliance because of the reduced pressure used during expiration.
Common Sleep Disorder Symptoms
- Loud snoring
- Choking or gasping for breath while sleeping
- Inability to fall asleep
- Inability to stay asleep
- Bad dreams
- Excessive movements during sleep
- Fear or anxiety about sleeping
- Morning headaches
- Drowsy driving
- High blood pressure
- Recent weight gain
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Falling asleep at inappropriate times
- Memory or learning problems
- Mood swings
Take a Self-Test
- Have you been told by friends or family that you snore?
- Do you often feel tired when you wake up?
- Do your worries about being able to sleep frustrate you?
- Do you find it difficult to wake up in the morning and keep to a schedule?
- Do you have problems working shifts or jet lag?
- Are you drowsy during the day or while driving?
- Do you fall asleep when you do not intend to?
- Do you wake up many times during the night?
- Do you wake in the morning with headaches?
- Have you been told that you stop breathing when you sleep?
- Do your legs jerk frequently at night or feel uncomfortable before sleep?
- Have you gained weight recently or are you overweight?
- Do you have high blood pressure or leg swelling?
If you have answered “yes” to two or more of these questions, you should consider seeing your physician for a referral to Sleep Disorders Center for an evaluation.
- The National Sleep Foundation (NSF)
- American Academy of Sleep Medicine
- Sleep Research Society
- National Center on Sleep Disorders Research (NCSDR)
- National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
- MEDLINE Plus Health Information