Essay about Sleeping Disorders

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Today’s Sleeping Disorders

A sleeping disorder is any disorder that affects, disrupts, or involves sleep that can affect your overall health, safety, and quality of life (Mayo Clinic.) A quarter of American citizens report insufficient sleep and rest at least 15 out of 30 days (Healthy People.) Many of us do not get enough sleep. Nearly 30 percent of adults get less than six hours of sleep each night and only about 30 percent of high school students get at least eight hours of sleep on an average school night. An estimated 35 percent of Americans report their sleep quality as “poor” or “only fair” (Parekh, 2017.) Olson, Riggin, et al. (2019), a government-funded research base explains the symptoms and signs of sleeping disorders while also explaining the most common disorders people face.

Sleeping disorders affect all ages of people, from toddlers to adults. The signs of sleeping disorders are excessive daytime sleepiness, irregular breathing, increased movement during sleep, irregular sleep/wake cycles, and difficulty falling asleep. Common sleep disorders such as insomnia are difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep throughout the night. Sleep apnea is abnormal patterns in breathing while you are asleep. Restless leg syndrome (RLS) is a sleep movement disorder that causes an uncomfortable sensation and an urge to move the legs while you’re trying to fall asleep. Lastly, Narcolepsy is characterized by extreme sleepiness during the day and falling asleep suddenly during the day (Olson et al. 2019.)

MedLine Plus wrote an article describing the causes of sleeping disorders. The site links to health information from the National Institutes of Health and other federal government agencies. The causes of sleeping disorders are heart and lung disease, pain, mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety, medicines, genetics, caffeine, alcohol, irregular schedules such as night shifts, and simply, aging. Both sources are merely two of dozens of other resources informing the public of the dangers that come with sleeping disorders. Sleeping behind the wheel is one of the main causes of vehicular deaths in America. Young adults and teenagers are at the most risk of developing a sleeping disorder simply because they tend to get very busy, resulting in them forgetting to focus on themselves and their health.

The Healthy People 2020 goal is to increase public knowledge of how adequate sleep and treatment improve health, productivity, wellness, quality of life, and safety on the roads and workplace. There are 3 main objectives written by the organization, the first being to increase the proportion of persons with symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea who seek medical evaluation.

To obtain this goal doctors would ask patients certain questions in order to diagnose someone, such as:

In the past 12 months, how often did you snore while sleeping? (NHANES), CDC/NCHS

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  1. Never
  2. Rarely (1 time a month)
  3. Occasionally (2-4 times a month)
  4. Frequently (5-15 times a month)
  5. Refused ( 16- 30 times a month)
  6. Don’t know

People were considered to have symptoms of sleep apnea if they answered snoring 3 or more nights per week. A diagnosis for this would be from a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine. The second objective was to reduce the rate of vehicular crashes per 100 million miles traveled that are due to drowsy driving. The third is to increase the proportion of adults who get sufficient sleep.

In addition to the Healthy People goals, the Cleveland Clinic, a government-funded association, wrote an article detailing how to prevent Insomnia. As stated by MedLine Plus, caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol all contribute to insomnia, thus avoiding these three things will assist in a good night’s rest. Avoid going to sleep with a negative mindset, thinking positively allows the mind to relax. Regular exercise is another great way to promote rest in the body as the body needs time to recover after a workout. These are merely 3 of 11 useful tips created by the Clinic that would easily aid Healthy People in obtaining their goals.

Sleep Education covers a campaign provided by AASM detailing why “Sleep Works for You.” Healthy sleep is essential for optimal health, performance and safety at work (AASM.) Employers can improve sleep health for shift workers by implementing these strategies:

  • Avoid permanent night-shift schedules
  • Assign regular, predictable schedules
  • Avoid long shift lengths
  • Give employees a voice in their schedule
  • Rotate shifts forward when regularly changing shifts
  • Provide frequent breaks within shifts (AASM)

The National Healthy Sleep Awareness Project equips healthcare professionals with tools and resources to promote healthy sleep and screen for sleep disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the project is led by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) in collaboration with the Sleep Research Society (SRS) and other partners. This project promotes the achievement of the Healthy People 2020 sleep health objectives. Healthcare professionals can help improve public health and safety by promoting healthy sleep and screening for sleep disorders (AASM 2019) Through all these organizations, the Healthy People goal is being implemented and becoming closer to achieving its goals.

There is no direct timeframe for these goals to be achieved. The human body needs a minimum of 7-8 hours of rest in order to function properly. The Sleep Education Organization has a campaign titled “Make Time to Sleep” where they inform readers of “tips to get started” on how to ensure our own healthy sleep habits. One tip that stood out to me was to identify a consistent bedtime that allows you to get the recommended hours of sleep. Another was to silence one’s cell phone notifications and keep the phone away from your bed during the night (AASM 2019.) These useful tips help induce the goal created by Healthy People 2020 by increasing public knowledge on how to get better rest. The National Healthy Sleep Awareness Project has numerous campaigns and public messages that coincide with the goals of Healthy People 2020. Make Time to Sleep, Sleep Works for You, Bedtime Calculator, 7 and Up, Awake at the Wheel, Sleep Recharges You, Stop the Snore, and Sleep Well, Be Well are simple examples of the many more mini projects created to promote sleep awareness. Public health campaigns are widely underrated and unrecognized, and the only interference with the information provided by them is the actual amount of people that willingly search and read it. Each campaign is simply a verification of the necessity behind the objectives of the Healthy People 2020 goals. The justification for these objectives is that the smallest improvement results in a statistically impactful difference when tested against the original numbers. Most people with symptoms of sleeping disorders fail to seek medical attention until it is too late, these campaigns inform them of other options they can do to prevent their conditions from worsening.

In conclusion, the only interference with the goals of Healthy People would be human ignorance, and how long we choose to ignore the importance of a healthy sleep schedule. Not one article was written informing the public on the topic of this issue, nor were there any prominent sources with a large audience. I think the only way to promote the goals of Healthy People 2020 is to broaden the places where people can be better informed on the manner. Reaching out to news networks, magazines, and other forms of advertisements to state that this is a real thing and that it affects a significant amount of the American population.

References

  1. Black, D. W., & Grant, J. E. (2014). ​Dsm-5 Tm guidebook the essential companion to the Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, fifth edition. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Publishing. Sleep disorders. (2019, August 10). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/sleep-disorders/symptoms-causes/syc-20354018.
  2. Sleep Disorders. (2019, November 8). Retrieved from https://medlineplus.gov/sleepdisorders.html.
  3. AASM. (2019). Sleep Health & Wellness Blog. Retrieved from http://sleepeducation.org/.
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Essay about Sleeping Disorders. (2023, March 01). Edubirdie. Retrieved May 26, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/essay-about-sleeping-disorders/
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