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Don't lose sleep over daylight savings time

Friday, March 09, 2007

Aurora Health Care promotes National Sleep Awareness Week March 5 - 11

Daylight saving time begins March 11, 3 weeks earlier than the usual first Sunday in April. This coincides with National Sleep Awareness Week, an annual public education, information and awareness campaign intended to make sleep consciousness a part of every person's lifestyle.

Aurora Health Care is a proud supporter of National Sleep Awareness Week and aims to help promote this important topic to the more than 100 million Americans that have trouble sleeping.

Aurora offers comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services for the entire range of sleep related problems through its 10 treatment centers located across Wisconsin. As part of National Sleep Awareness Week, Aurora offers tips for getting a good night's rest and dispels common myths about sleep. Call the Aurora sleep wellness hotline at 877-860-6655 for more details, questions or to schedule an appointment with a sleep disorders specialist.

Common sleep myths

  1. The older you get, the fewer hours of sleep you need. Sleep experts recommend a range of 7-9 hours of sleep for the average adult. While sleep patterns change as adults age, the amount of sleep needed generally does not.
  2. You can "cheat" on the amount of sleep you get. When adults don't get the adequate 7-9 hours of sleep each night, they accumulate a sleep debt that can be difficult to "pay back" if it becomes too big. The resulting sleep deprivation has been linked to health problems such as obesity and high blood pressure, negative mood and behavior, decreased productivity, and safety issues in the home, on the job and on the road.
  3. Daytime sleepiness always means a person isn't getting enough sleep. Excessive daytime sleepiness can occur even after getting enough nighttime sleep, which can be a sign of an underlying medical condition or sleep disorder such as narcolepsy or sleep apnea. These problems can often be treated, and symptoms should be discussed with a physician.
  4. Snoring is a common problem but it isn't harmful. Although snoring may be harmless for most people, it can be a symptom of a life threatening sleep disorder called sleep apnea, especially if it is accompanied by severe daytime sleepiness. Sleep apnea is characterized by pauses in breathing that prevent air from flowing into or out of a sleeping person's airways. Men and women who snore loudly, especially if pauses in the snoring are noted, should consult a physician.
  5. Health problems such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and depression are unrelated to the amount and quality of a person's sleep. Studies have found a relationship between the quantity and quality of one's sleep and many health problems. For example, insufficient sleep affects growth hormone secretion that can increase the chance for weight gain increases. Blood pressure usually falls during the sleep cycle, however, interrupted sleep can lead to hypertension and cardiovascular problems. More and more scientific studies are showing correlations between poor and insufficient sleep and disease.

Tips that may help sleep

  • Exercise regularly, but finish your workout at least 3 hours before bedtime.
  • Finish eating at least 2-3 hours before your regular bedtime.
  • Avoid foods and drinks high in sugar, caffeine, and alcohol before bedtime.
  • Establish a regular, relaxing bedtime routine and keep regular sleep times.
  • Ensure an optimal sleeping environment that is dark, cool and quiet.

Aurora's Sleep Disorders Treatment Centers provide comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services for the entire range of sleep related problems. Aurora offers Treatment Centers in Milwaukee, West Allis, Sheboygan, Elkhorn, Hartford, Kenosha, Waukesha, Oshkosh, Green Bay and Two Rivers. For more information, click here or please call 877-860-6655.

Aurora Health Care is a not-for-profit Wisconsin health care provider and a nationally recognized leader in efforts to improve the quality of health care. Aurora offers services at sites in more than 90 communities throughout eastern Wisconsin.

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Contact: Jennifer Gross (414-385-2363)

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