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Blog Feature

By: Tamara Sellman, RPSGT, CCSH on August 4th, 2020

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This Week in Sleep Medicine: August 4, 2020

Sleep Technologist Advice

While You Were Sleeping: What Sleep Technologists Need to Know This Week

sleeping lemur 2

Your media watchdog for headlines and trends
relevant to sleep technology and patient education.

 


PANDEMIC QUICK LINKS

For the latest information, please check the following resources :


ADVOCACY WATCH

Low Respiratory Arousal Threshold in African Americans with OSA Offers Clues to CPAP Nonadherence
SLEEP REVIEW
July 31, 2020

From the article: “New data shows that over 60% of African American patients evaluated for obstructive sleep apnea have a low respiratory arousal threshold, compared to 30% to 50% in other populations.

Takeaway: The researchers can't objectively nail down a reason for this difference. Regardless, it behooves sleep technologists who work with African American OSA patients to go that extra mile to help them with their comfort levels, usage numbers, and overall compliance in careful follow ups for first-time PAPusers. 

CULTURE WATCH

How Much Is Bad Sleep Hurting Your Career?
HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW
July 27, 2020

From the article: “[W]hat do we know about the actual connection between sleep and work? Assuming we spend roughly 1/3 of our adult lives on each of these two activities, what’s the relationship between the two? Here are three key lessons from science.

Takeaway: This is an interesting rebuttal to the idea that ours is a "wake-centric era" as described in the link featured under Trend Watch (below). 

TREND WATCH

Awake In The Middle Of The Night (podcast)
THE COLIN MCENROE SHOW
July 16, 2020

From the show notes: “We live in what Rubin Naiman calls a 'wake-centric era,' where sleeping and dreaming are viewed as less important than being awake and on the go. It's hard to come down from the hyperaroused state we whip ourselves into by the end of a day. It's not surprising that we can't sleep.

Takeaway: The premise of this discussion—that the dominant culture places less priority on sleep—may be up for argument, given all the new devices and products and services that have blossomed since the time this "wake-centric era" theory by Naiman was first published in 2016. But the nightly state of hyperarousal is most definitely hard to overcome, especially during a pandemic.

INDUSTRY WATCH

How I Became a Sleep Navigator
SLEEP REVIEW
August 3, 2020

From the article: “Four patient navigators for sleep medicine explain their professional backgrounds, how they landed the (in most cases, newly created) role, and what they find rewarding in the position.

Takeaway: Want to carve out your own space as a Sleep Navigator? Check out the CCSH Designated Education Program Recorded Modules found here

TECHNOLOGY WATCH

A new way to control experimentation with dreams
MIT NEWS
July 21, 2020

From the article: “In a new paper, researchers from the Media Lab’s Fluid Interfaces group introduce a novel method called “Targeted Dream Incubation” (TDI). This protocol, implemented through an app in conjunction with a wearable sleep-tracking sensor device, not only helps record dream reports, but also guides dreams toward particular themes by repeating targeted information at sleep onset, thereby enabling incorporation of this information into dream content. The TDI method and accompanying technology serve as tools for controlled experimentation in dream study, widening avenues for research into how dreams impact emotion, creativity, memory, and beyond.

Takeaway: 2020 has left me with serious trust issues, so I'm not sure I'll be hooking myself up to this technology anytime soon, but maybe you'd like to try it out?

PHARMA WATCH

Jazz Pharmaceuticals Announces U.S. FDA Approval of Xywav™ Oral Solution for Cataplexy or Excessive Daytime Sleepiness Associated with Narcolepsy
JAZZ PHARMACEUTICALS 
July 22, 2020

From the press release: “'We have been working for nearly a decade to develop Xywav, a unique oxybate product with a significant reduction in sodium. We are proud to advance the science behind our sleep research program in order to continue making a difference for people living with narcolepsy,' said Bruce Cozadd, chairman and CEO of Jazz Pharmaceuticals.

Takeaway: This improvement brings new hope for people who need this narcolepsy drug but cannot tolerate the high-sodium profile of the previous solution. 

SLEEP HYGIENE WATCH

Survey: A Majority of U.S. Adults Lose Sleep Due to Reading
AMERICAN ACADEMY OF SLEEP MEDICINE
July 23, 2020

From the press release: “If you find yourself losing track of time while reading, it may be time to change up your nighttime routine. Sleep experts recommend setting a bedtime alarm to remind yourself that it’s time to put the book down for the night.

Takeaway: Guilty as charged! I remember the technologist telling me over the loudspeaker to please put my book away back in 2010 when I had my first sleep study (before I became an RPSGT). I admit, it's a habit I'm not willing to give up!  

LEGAL WATCH

Judge rejects 'sexsomnia' defence and convicts Vancouver man of sexual assault
VANCOUVER SUN
July 29, 2020

From the article: “Cullen said that Antonius’s initial belief about the allegations against him, including that the victim was lying and trying to extort him, was not genuine and it undermined his credibility.

Takeaway: This could be described as a "he said versus she said" situation. I don't envy any judge or jury who has to deal with this kind of case.  


BIO:  AAST blog columnist Tamara Sellman RPSGT, CCSH curates the sleep health information clearinghouse, SleepyHeadCENTRAL, where she follows sleep health news headlines daily. She is also an independent sleep health journalist, writes sleep-related columns for multiple chronic illness patient advocacy publishers and apps, and contributes the Journal Club continued education presentations for the AAST. You might occasionally see her work in A2Zzz as well. She can be reached at sleepyheadcentral@gmail.com.