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Blog Feature

By: Tamara Sellman on October 24th, 2017

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This Week in Sleep Medicine: October 24, 2017

Sleep Technologist Advice

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

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


Deviated Septum Causes and Symptoms to Know About
October 20, 2017 

From the article:A deviated septum can lead to difficulty breathing and even a blocked nostril. Loud or noisy breathing, headaches, and facial pain are also common symptoms of a deviated septum.

Takeaway:  Everything you need to know about this physiological problem.


Doctors are dangerously tired, and health care leaders aren’t taking action
October 17, 2017 

From the blog:In America, it is far more dangerous to be a patient in a hospital than to fly 40,000 feet in the air in an aluminum tube at 500 miles per hour as an airline customer. In the last eight years, not one person has died in a crash of a U.S.-certified commercial airline operation anywhere in the world. According to a Johns Hopkins study, more than 250,000 Americans die from preventable medical errors every year. Taking physician fatigue seriously would not fix every fatal medical error, but it would surely lead to greater patient safety.

Takeaway: One could argue that it's not just physicians who are sleep deprived, but nurses, too… and sleep technologists. If you need to address scheduling concerns with your lab, here's some compelling evidence to support your request for a more livable work schedule.


Can Lavender Really Help You Sleep Better?
October 18, 2017

From the blog: “Though most of the studies to date have been small (large-scale trials are needed), there’s enough consistency across the results to see that better sleep might be achievable by using lavender.

Takeaway: Patients seem to want to know more about using lavender as a aromatherapy sleep aid. Here's some evidence it can be useful… but let's hope patients aren't putting it in their PAP machine humidifying chamber!


Do you need BiPAP or CPAP therapy? A side by side review.
October 17, 2017

From the article: “When it comes to treating sleep apnea, CPAP therapy is probably the first treatment that comes to mind. What probably never comes to mind, or at least not initially, is BiPAP therapy. And these two forms of treatment have more differences than just their names.

Takeaway: Maybe as techs we already know this information, but this article could be of good use to patients who are either new to PAP therapy or who may be switching from CPAP to bilevel PAP.


A Sleep Scientist on the Vicious Cycle of Insomnia and Sleeping Pills
October 21, 2017

From the article: “Maybe you’re one of the estimated 50 to 70 million Americans who suffer from sleep disorders, including insomnia; maybe you’re also among the 4 percent of American adults who rely on prescription medication in order to fall asleep. If so, Matt Walker, a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, has a bit of bad news for you.

Takeaway: The discussion in which Walker differentiates between pharmaceutical sedation and biological sleep  is really useful to know if you wish to explain to patients how hypnotic sedatives work.


You’re invited to join our new digital AWAKE group in Facebook!
October 21, 2017

From the article: “The admins and moderators look forward to friendly chatter and information sharing at the group. Working together to gather support, solutions, and smart tips for better sleep is what this group is all about.

Takeaway: Here's an opportunity to interface with an A.W.AK.E. group directly online. You are invited to join and the ASAA encourages sleep clinics to share this invitation with their patients, especially if they live in communities that don't have a face-to-face support group. 

Disclaimer: The author of this blog post is web consultant for the ASAA.


Circadian Rhythm Being Implemented on Navy Surface Ships
October 20, 2017

From the article: The plan is to implement circadian rhythm into watchbills and shipboard routines throughout the Surface Navy, with the intention of being better prepared to support operational commitments. Naval Surface Force ships have been directed to implement circadian rhythm by December 20, 2017. …'We’ve been talking about circadian rhythm for several years now,' said [Capt. Brendan McLane, chief of staff, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet], 'and we’ve gotten to a point now where we’re ready to make it mandatory.'”

Takeaway: Were you aware that at least two naval vessel collisions this year were caused by seafarer's fatigue (the nautical equivalent of drowsy driving)?

BIO:  Tamara Sellman RPSGT, CCSH curates the sleep health information clearinghouse, SleepyHeadCENTRAL, where she follows sleep health news headlines daily. She is also Web Consultant for the American Sleep Apnea Association, writes MS-related columns for two medical publishers, and contributes as a freelance writer to AAST’s magazine, A2Zzz, and other places.