As a sleep professional, it's important that you educate your patients on parasomnias, such as a sleep-related eating disorder (SRED), since sleep disorders like these could negatively impact a patient’s health through weight gain and obesity. The journal Psychiatry provides these sleep-related eating disorder statistics:
In 1934, French researcher Henri Roger coined the term parasomnie (in English, parasomnia; from the Greek para meaning “alongside” and Latin somnum meaning “sleep”) for phenomena that occur in the transition from sleep to wake or vice versa. A parasomnia can occur during the transition between nonrapid eye movement (NREM) sleep and wake (i.e., NREM parasomnias such as sleepwalking, sleep terrors, confusional arousal, sleep-related eating disorder) or during the transition between rapid eye movement (REM) sleep and wake (i.e., REM parasomnias such as REM sleep behavior disorder [RBD], recurrent isolated sleep paralysis, nightmare disorder). A parasomnia has the following features: recurrent episodes of incomplete awakening from sleep, an inappropriate or lack of response to intervention or redirection during an episode, limited or no cognition of dream imagery and partial or complete amnesia for the event. In addition, the nocturnal disturbance is not explained by another sleep, psychiatric or medical disorder or medication/substance use. Some people experience REM parasomnias and NREM parasomnias, a condition called parasomnia overlap disorder (POD). A person with POD has a disorder of arousal (e.g., sleepwalking confusional arousal, sleep terror) and rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (RBD; which involves vivid, often unpleasant dreams; vocalization during sleep and sudden, often violent, arm and leg movements during REM sleep [i.e., dream-enacting behavior]).
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Entering the field of sleep medicine can be daunting and intense or it can be fun and fascinating. Most of the time it is all of those combined! With this in mind, I want to provide some “tricks of the trade,” so to speak, for a new technician, or “newbie,” in a new series called “For the Newbie.” The objective of this series is to help trainees adapt to the sleep field and to remind their trainers what it was like to go through the process. A technician’s mindset, practice and routine are all important factors that will be beneficial as they enter the field of sleep.
Staffing during this pandemic has created challenges for many sleep centers. We have been challenged to not only implement enhanced infection control strategies and patient health screening but also have been tasked to staff our sleep centers appropriately to provide ideal social distancing. This has resulted in spreading out staff over the week and leaving beds closed rather than having staff work together in some instances. The consequence of this is having more staff working alone, making them more vulnerable to possible workplace violence. It is that safety concern I will be addressing in this article.
Note: This article was originally published in the 2021 Q1 issue of A2Zzz.
As the new year is now well underway, I want to share a number of new and exciting initiatives AAST has underway to enhance and grow the educational opportunities we offer. From new educational product launches to a new webinar series brought to you by the AAST Education Advisory Committee, we are committed to the continued professional development of our members.
From treating patients to running sleep clinics and everything in between, we know AAST members are working hard and dedicating countless hours to advance the sleep field. Therefore, we want to spotlight our members and member facilities and share the work they are doing day in and day out with the AAST community.
A continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine is the most commonly prescribed device for treating sleep apnea and associated sleep-related breathing disorders, delivering a steady flow of pressurized air into a patient's nose and mouth as they sleep. This keeps airways open and helps normalize breathing. Recent research has shown that patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) exhibited improvements in sleepiness and depressive and anxiety symptoms after three years of CPAP use. Another study found that patients with OSA and a history of cardiovascular disease treated with CPAP therapy reported 20% higher levels of moderate physical activity compared with non-CPAP users, with these patients also more likely to exercise at levels meeting clinical recommendations.
AAST is proud to launch its Dear AAST blog column. This column is aimed at answering questions our audience, particularly AAST members, have on all aspects of AAST – from membership and educational offerings to CECs and new product offerings. Be sure to check the blog often for the latest columns.