Sleep Studies Help Some Rest Easy

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Sleep is a problem for many Americans, and with the effects of some sleep aids recently being called into question it has some facing even more sleepless nights and wondering what's next.

It affects your health, your job and your relationships, and you may not realize how important it is unless you're not getting it.

"A lot of times when we're busy one of the things that we cross off the list to do that day is to sleep, but in actuality that's one of the most important things to do," Clinical Psychologist Dr. Kim Corner said.

All sorts of things can keep you up at night, but the real question is how can you get that ever important shut eye?

"Instead of the bedroom being a place of calmness that induces sleep, it becomes a place where we're alert. We're wakeful. We're anxious. We're tossing and turning and obviously those qualities don't produce sleep," Dr. Corner said.

That's what the technologists at Bryan West Sleep Center deal with every day and night.

If a trip to your regular doctor doesn't solve your sleep problems, it may mean a trip there so the professionals can watch you toss and turn.

While they're not watching your every movement, they are looking for a way to get you back to what you need: a good night's sleep.

"We start looking for the different things," Sleep Technologist Leigh Heithoff said. "We usually just monitor, just sit back and see what's going on while you sleep."

Those signs may point to answers and explain why you can't close your eyes even after your head hits the pillow.

"By the time you get to us, we're probably about 90% sure that we're dealing with an actual sleep disorder by the time you get here," Heithoff said. "So, you're going to see a sleep physician so we make sure that we do the appropriate testing, make sure that we're looking for what we think is going on, and be able to adjust testing throughout the night or even the next day to help figure out what type of sleep disorder we're dealing with."

These experts look for a fix.

"It's very individual from person to person, taking their sleep history, taking their physical history, their mental health history, as to what's going to work best for them," Heithoff said.

It's something that will, at the end of the day, help their patients sleep well at night.