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Find and Book Sleep Medicine Specialists Near Me in Berryville, AR

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Sleep Medicine Frequently Asked Questions

What is a sleep medicine specialist (somnologist)?

A sleep medicine specialist, also known as a somnologist, is a doctor who diagnoses and treats sleep disorders. Many sleep specialists first train in internal medicine, psychiatry, or neurology before specializing in sleep medicine.

What conditions do somnologists treat?

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Sleep specialists treat a variety of conditions, such as:

  • bruxism: the act of grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw during sleep
  • hypersomnia: a condition in which you feel excessive sleepiness
  • insomnia: a sleep disorder where you have a hard time falling and staying asleep
  • narcolepsy: a condition that causes atypical sleep patterns, including sudden urges to fall asleep
  • night terrors: the recurrence of disruptive sleep episodes where you may flail, cry out, breath rapidly, and more
  • obstructive sleep apnea (OSA): a condition in which you momentarily stop breathing while asleep
  • REM sleep behavior disorder: a condition in which you attempt to act out your dreams while asleep
  • sleepwalking (somnambulism): a condition in which you walk or move around while asleep
  • snoring: the narrowing of airways that can be a sign of restricted breathing

The exact nature of your sleep disorder may depend on some factors, such as:

  • aging: many adults 65 years or older report having some sleep disorder
  • environmental conditions: disorders that result from smoking or alcohol use
  • genetics: sleep disorders such as narcolepsy are genetic
  • medical conditions: these include asthma and OSA
  • psychiatric conditions: depression and anxiety disorders can disrupt sleep

What procedures do sleep medicine specialists perform?

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There are several procedures sleep medicine specialists perform to diagnose and treat sleep disorders, including:

When should I contact a sleep medicine specialist?

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You may benefit from speaking with a sleep specialist if you’re not getting enough sleep, have difficulty falling or staying asleep, or feel unrested. Your primary care physician may also refer you to a specialist if they believe specific symptoms result from a sleep disorder.

What can I expect from my sleep medicine specialist appointment?

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During your first sleep specialist appointment, your doctor will ask questions to determine the root cause of your sleep problems. Depending on your answers, your sleep specialist may also recommend diagnostic tests or a sleep study. During sleep studies, a technician will monitor your brainwaves, heart rate, eye movement, and more. Your sleep medicine specialist will use the findings from the sleep study to help diagnose your sleep disorder and put together your treatment plan.

What questions should I ask my sleep medicine specialist?

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It’s important that you prepare for your appointment with a somnologist. To help you get started, we’ve created a list of good questions to ask your doctor:

  • Do I have a sleep disorder?
  • What may be causing my sleep disorder?
  • Are there any tests you recommend I get?
  • What are the possible risks or complications of my condition?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • Would I benefit from a sleep study?
  • Are there any lifestyle changes I can make that will help?

You may use these questions as a starting point, but feel free to add your own. A good practice is to also ask for additional information and take notes during your appointment.