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Blog Feature

By: Tamara Sellman on October 31st, 2017

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This Week in Sleep Medicine: October 31, 2017

Sleep Technologist Advice

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

Happy Halloween for AAST blog
Your media watchdog for headlines and trends
relevant to sleep technology and patient education.

CULTURE WATCH

Need Surgery, but Have IH?
HYPERSOMNIA FOUNDATION
October 24, 2017 

From the article:There are many things doctors must be very careful about when any patient receives anesthetic medications, but there are additional issues that must be considered with IH patients.

Takeaway:  If you encounter patients who are facing surgery, the information from this article might be useful (even if they don't have IH, but have untreated sleep apnea). 

INDUSTRY WATCH

Feeling drowsy? Learn the dangers of microsleep
ALASKA SLEEP EDUCATION CENTER
October 24, 2017 

From the blog: Microsleep is a temporary episode of sleep that occurs for a fraction of a second up to 30 seconds. When you are fatigued, your brain often tries to compensate by shutting down for short periods of time. Microsleep generally happens without warning and you often don’t even know you have just nodded off.

Takeaway: Driving home after a shift places you at high risk for these. Try to spot the warning signs and be sensible if you're too sleepy to drive.

TREND WATCH

New pilot study: Montmorency tart cherry juice increased sleep time among participating adults ages 50+ by 1 hour and 24 minutes
EUREKALERT: 
October 27, 2017

From the blog: “Montmorency tart cherry juice was found to help extend sleep time by 84 minutes among eight study participants, ages 50 and older who suffer from insomnia, according to a new pilot study published in American Journal of Therapeutics.

Takeaway: In case any of your patients start asking about cherry juice… the news about cherry juice is all over the Internet.

TECHNOLOGY WATCH

Chicago Bulls Use Rise Science Sleep Program To Improve Rest, Recovery
SPORT TECHIE
October 30, 2017

From the article: “Ensuring proper rest for its marquee players has been one of the most pervasive issues affecting the NBA the last several seasons, prompting a lengthening of the schedule and a reduction in games on back-to-back nights and the elimination of stretches with four games in five nights. While that league-wide initiative will aid every team’s recovery this season, the Chicago Bulls are among the organizations adding layers of player monitoring, including a renewal of its partnership with sleep-coaching platform Rise Science.

Takeaway: If professional athletes can show the value of good sleep on performance, maybe they can inspire young fans to value and prioritize sleep more.

PHARMA WATCH

Sleeping pills don't actually help you sleep, or put you to sleep at all
METRO
October 26, 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: If you can explain to patients how sleeping pills actually work—and that you actually aren't sleeping at all, from a biological standpoint—you might find they reconsider opting in for Ambien.

HEALTH LITERACY WATCH

Escape the Burden of Switching to Daylight Time
CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL THERAPEUTICS
October 26, 2017

From the article: “According to a recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, during the week after the shift into Daylight Time, the rate of hospital admissions for heart attack rose by as much as 10 percent. Another recent study compared high school students in parts of Indiana that use Daylight Time with those in other parts of the state that stay on Standard Time year-round. On average, those who were subjected to Daylight Time had SAT scores more than 16 points lower than those in areas that didn’t shift the clock!

Takeaway: It's baaaaaack! And the time change is something we should discuss with our patients before it happens (which is next Sunday morning at 2am). 

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

FEDERAL WATCH

AASM supports proposed rule to increase veterans’ telemedicine access
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
October 27, 2017

From the article: “The AASM has submitted comments to the Department of Veterans Affairs in support of a proposed rule that would expand telemedicine access for VA patients (RIN 2900-AQ06-Authority of Health Care Providers to Practice Telehealth).

Takeaway: This is one step in the right direction for helping this specific patient population get the help it needs.


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.