Cover image for Sleep disorders for dummies
Sleep disorders for dummies
Hirshkowitz, Max.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley Pub., [2004]

Physical Description:
xxii, 355 pages ; 24 cm.
General Note:
Includes index.
Subject Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
RC547 .H57 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



When the last dinner dishes have been put away and the evening news is over, most of us think about going to bed. But for the millions who suffer from a chronic sleep disorder, going to bed doesn't necessarily mean going to sleep. And for millions more who experience occasional sleep disturbances, nighttime might not be such a picnic, either.

Now there's an easy-to-follow guide to help you get a good night's rest.  Sleep Disorders For Dummies is for anyone who has trouble sleeping-or has a loved one who suffers from a sleep disorder. Written by a sleep specialist and a medical reporter, this no-nonsense guide helps you:

Prevent and manage sleep disorders Improve your sleep habits Find relief from your symptoms Ask your doctor the right questions Enhance the quality of sleep

This fact-packed guide walks you through the different types of sleep disorders, includin g sleep apnea, insomnia, narcolepsy, and restless legs syndrome. You'll discover the causes and symptoms of each disorder, the various medical conditions that can disrupt sleep, and the most common treatments. Plus, you'll see how to use good nutrition and exercise to promote sounder sleep and avoid known sleep disrupters such as caffeine and problem foods. The authors also give you solid, reassuring advice on:

Finding the right doctor to diagnose and treat your sleep disorder Managing stress and anxiety Turning your bedroom into a sleep sanctuary Choosing between the different types of sleep clinics Handling sleep disorders in children

Featuring savvy tips on preventing jet lag, sleeping well if you work the night shift, and getting kids to bed without fuss, Sleep Disorders for Dummies will help you get your zzzzzzzzs!

Author Notes

Max Hirshkowitz, PhD, DABSM, is Director of the Sleep Disorders and Research Center of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center
Patricia B. Smith is an award-winning medical writer

Table of Contents

Forewordp. xxi
Introductionp. 1
About This Bookp. 2
Conventions Used in This Bookp. 2
What You Can Skipp. 3
Foolish Assumptionsp. 3
How This Book Is Organizedp. 3
Icons Used in This Bookp. 5
Where to Go from Herep. 6
Part I I Couldn't Sleep at All Last Nightp. 7
Chapter 1 Sleep, Blessed Sleepp. 9
Sleep: Recharging Your Brain and Bodyp. 10
While you were outp. 11
Telling time--your brain's internal clockp. 13
Deciding how much sleep is enoughp. 13
Recognizing the Dangers of Sleep Deprivationp. 15
Problems associated with poor sleepp. 16
Sleepiness and drivingp. 17
Sleepiness and industrial accidentsp. 18
What Sound Sleep Giveth, Sleep Disorders Taketh Awayp. 19
Do you need help? Examining your symptomsp. 20
Reviewing the diagnostic processp. 20
Taking a quick look at sleep and sleep disordersp. 22
Chapter 2 Evaluating Your Sleepp. 27
Considering the Causes of Poor Sleep--Is Your Problem Chronic or Temporary?p. 28
Identifying causes of temporary sleeplessnessp. 29
Pinpointing chronic sleeplessnessp. 30
Taking the First Steps toward Diagnosisp. 32
Keeping a sleep diaryp. 32
Adding up your sleep debtp. 36
Calling Mr. Sandman--Seeking Professional Helpp. 38
Chapter 3 What's Up, Doc? Getting a Diagnosisp. 41
Consulting a Doctorp. 42
Starting with your PCPp. 42
Being referred to a sleep specialistp. 44
Getting Current on Your Insurance Coveragep. 48
Testing, Testing--One, Two, Zzzzz: Undergoing Evaluation at a Sleep Labp. 50
Locating an accredited sleep labp. 50
Touring a sleep labp. 51
Being testedp. 52
Receiving the resultsp. 56
Part II Insomnia: The Most Famous Dyssomnia of Them Allp. 57
Chapter 4 I Can't Sleep a Wink: Examining Insomniap. 59
So What Is Insomnia, Anyway?p. 60
Who Gets Insomnia?p. 61
Why women have insomnia more frequently than menp. 61
Growing older with insomniap. 62
Insomnia and depressionp. 63
Classifying the Types of Insomniap. 64
According to the type of sleep disturbancep. 64
According to the duration of symptomsp. 65
According to underlying causesp. 67
Sleep mechanisms gone awryp. 70
Considering Common Causes of Insomniap. 72
Focusing on the Symptoms of Primary Insomniap. 73
Diagnosing Insomniap. 75
Sleep historyp. 76
Sleep studiesp. 76
Treating Insomniap. 77
Using prescription sleep aidsp. 78
Using OTC sleep aidsp. 81
Using herbal sleep aidsp. 82
Effective behavioral treatmentsp. 84
Kicking the Sleep Habit--Movement Disorders and Insomniap. 88
The creepy crawlers--RLSp. 89
Shake a leg--PLMDp. 91
Chapter 5 Dealing with Secondary Insomniap. 93
Howling at the Moon: Pain--The Great Awakenerp. 94
Looking at how pain disrupts sleepp. 95
Identifying the most common causes of nighttime painp. 96
Alleviating pain for a good night's sleepp. 100
Fighting for Breath--Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseasep. 100
How breathing problems make sleep difficultp. 101
Promoting better sleep in patients with breathing problemsp. 101
Worrying about Heart Diseasep. 102
Sleep apnea and heart diseasep. 102
Anxiety and sleeplessness in cardiac patientsp. 103
I Shouldn't Have Eaten That Anchovy Pizza--Indigestion and Sleeplessnessp. 104
Burning the Midnight Oil--Sleep and Mental Healthp. 105
Battling the blues--sleep and depressionp. 106
Who's that hiding underneath my bed? Paranoiap. 106
Too wired to sleep, or too sad--bipolar disorderp. 107
Fretting the night away--anxiety disordersp. 108
It's happening again--post traumatic stress disorderp. 108
Wintering the storm--seasonal affective disorderp. 109
Chapter 6 Adopting a Sleep-Well Lifestylep. 111
Promoting Good Sleep Hygienep. 111
Establishing Healthy Sleep Habitsp. 113
Including sleep in your regular daily routinep. 113
Making sleep a priorityp. 114
Choosing your bedtimep. 116
Planning ahead for bedtimep. 118
A Good Book, a Glass of Milk, and You: Benefiting from a Bedtime Routinep. 118
Putting a plan in placep. 119
Winding down: Considering activities conducive to sleepp. 120
Avoiding Known Sleep Disruptersp. 126
Managing stressp. 126
Feeling your painp. 131
Illnessp. 131
Battling nasal congestionp. 132
Reconsidering stimulating herbal supplementsp. 133
Getting "un-wired"--avoiding alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco late at nightp. 133
Avoiding problem foodsp. 137
Chapter 7 Adjusting Your Bedroom Environment for a Better Night's Sleepp. 141
Keeping Negative Emotional Energy Out of the Bedroomp. 141
Canning Clutterp. 143
Tempering the Temperaturep. 143
Tracking Down the Invisible Sleep Interrupter: Poor Air Qualityp. 144
Ahchoo! Dealing with aggravating allergensp. 145
Handling humidityp. 148
Sleeping with the Lights Onp. 149
Blocking Out Noise for Some Zzzzzzsp. 150
Getting the Lumps Out--Choosing Comfortable Beddingp. 151
Removing the pea from under your mattressp. 152
Picking the pillow that's right for youp. 154
Loving the linens you're lying onp. 154
Reconsidering Your Bedfellowsp. 156
Catering to your kids' needs without sacrificing your sleepp. 157
Putting your pets in their placep. 157
Sleeping with a restless spousep. 158
Sleeping Safetyp. 158
Burning issues--nighttime firesp. 158
Breathing in dangerp. 159
Part III Everything You Need to Know about Other Troubling Dyssomniasp. 161
Chapter 8 Mixing Up Day for Night: Circadian Rhythm Disordersp. 163
Understanding Circadian Rhythm Disordersp. 164
Leaving on a Jet Plane: Jet Lagp. 166
How does jet lag affect you?p. 166
Preventing jet lagp. 168
Treating jet lagp. 171
Working Odd Hours: Shift-Work Sleep Disorderp. 172
Factories go all night--why can't you?p. 173
Connecting sleep problems and night-shift workersp. 174
How does shift-work sleep disorder affect you?p. 174
Treating shift-work sleep disorderp. 175
Coping with Delayed Sleep-Phase Syndromep. 176
How does DSPS affect you?p. 177
Treating DSPSp. 178
Reviewing the Less Common Circadian Rhythm Disordersp. 178
Dealing with an irregular sleep-wake patternp. 179
Handling advanced sleep-phase syndromep. 180
Looking at non-24-hour sleep-wake syndromep. 181
Chapter 9 There's Snoring, and Then There's Snoring: Dealing with Sleep Apneap. 183
Snoring 101p. 184
Looking at the science of snoringp. 184
Considering some causesp. 187
Evaluating your treatment optionsp. 190
Knowing When Snoring Is Dangerous: Sleep Apneap. 196
Categorizing sleep apneap. 197
Wrecking sleep: What sleep apnea doesp. 197
Understanding risk factors for sleep apneap. 198
Recognizing symptoms of sleep apnea for an accurate diagnosisp. 199
Diagnosing sleep apneap. 202
Treating sleep apneap. 203
Chapter 10 Falling Asleep Standing Up: Narcolepsy and Hypersomniap. 207
Understanding Narcolepsyp. 208
Pinpointing narcolepsy's causesp. 210
Identifying narcolepsy's symptomsp. 213
Diagnosing and treating narcolepsyp. 217
Living with narcolepsyp. 221
Coping with Hypersomniap. 224
Hypersomnia versus narcolepsyp. 225
Getting a diagnosis and treatmentp. 225
Part IV Walking, Talking, and Other Parasomniasp. 227
Chapter 11 While You Were Sleeping: Walking, Talking, and Other Strange Nighttime Activitiesp. 229
Figuring Out What Parasomnia Meansp. 230
What causes parasomnias?p. 231
Genetic predispositionp. 232
Diagnosing and treating parasomniasp. 232
I Was Up Last Night, but Didn't Even Know It--Arousal Disordersp. 233
The midnight strider--sleepwalkingp. 233
Confusional arousalsp. 236
The midnight raider--eating while sleepingp. 237
Rough Passage--Sleep-Wake Transition Disordersp. 240
Talking in your sleep--somniloquyp. 240
Headbanging and bodyrocking--rhythmic movement disorderp. 241
Ouch! Now I'm awake for sure!--nocturnal leg crampsp. 242
Please help me, I'm falling--sleep startsp. 244
Grinding Your Teeth: Bruxismp. 244
Dripping with Night Sweatp. 246
Causesp. 246
Symptomsp. 246
Treatmentp. 246
Chapter 12 Night Terrors and Other Frightening or Unpleasant Sleep Problemsp. 247
Being Scared Out of Your Wits and Not Knowing Why--Night Terrorsp. 248
Causesp. 250
Symptomsp. 251
Treatmentp. 251
Confronting the Monster in the Closet--Nightmaresp. 252
Causesp. 253
Symptomsp. 254
Treatmentp. 256
Hypnagogic Hallucinations (Sometimes Terrifying, Usually Not)p. 256
Causesp. 257
Symptomsp. 257
Treatmentp. 258
When Sleep Turns Violent--REM Sleep Behavior Disorderp. 258
Causesp. 259
Symptomsp. 260
Treatmentp. 260
Frozen to the Bed--Sleep Paralysisp. 260
Causesp. 261
Symptomsp. 261|34
Dealing with Nocturnal Seizures or Sleep Epilepsyp. 262
Causesp. 263
Symptomsp. 263
Treatmentp. 263
Suffering with Sleep-Related Painful Erectionsp. 264
Causesp. 264
Symptomsp. 265
Treatmentp. 265
Hidden Danger--REM-Related Sinus Arrestp. 265
Causesp. 265
Symptomsp. 265
Treatmentp. 266
Chapter 13 Living with a Parasomniap. 267
Staying Safep. 268
Making a planp. 269
"Sleep-proofing" your bedroomp. 269
Down the up staircasep. 273
File under "sleep"--considering the bedroom officep. 273
Securing the kitchen and bathroomp. 273
Escape-proofing your housep. 276
Managing a Sleepwalking or Dream-Enactment Parasomnia Episodep. 278
Don't fence me in--pondering restraintsp. 278
Padding for protectionp. 279
Sleeping in separate bedroomsp. 279
Sleeping in the same room, but separate bedsp. 281
Adjusting to Your New Routinep. 281
Chapter 14 Battling the Midnight Blues: Pediatric Sleep Disordersp. 283
Grappling with Why Your Child Won't Go to Bedp. 284
Showing your child good sleep habitsp. 286
Building a bedtime routinep. 288
Analyzing Your Child's Possible Sleep Disorderp. 291
Identifying Pediatric Sleep Disordersp. 292
Infant and childhood sleep apneap. 292
Sudden Infant Death Syndromep. 294
Sleepwalking and sleep talkingp. 295
Sleep terrors and nightmaresp. 297
Bedwettingp. 297
Rhythmic movement disordersp. 299
Teeth grindingp. 299
Part V The Part of Tensp. 301
Chapter 15 The Top Ten Sleep Disrupters--And How to Deal with 'Emp. 303
Painp. 304
High Caffeine Consumptionp. 304
Emotional Upsetsp. 305
Too Darn Hot (or Too Darn Cold)p. 306
Stressp. 306
Illnessp. 307
Indigestionp. 308
Reaction to Medicationp. 308
Unfamiliar Environmentp. 309
Exercisep. 309
Chapter 16 Ten Signs That Your Bedmate Has a Sleep Disorderp. 311
Excessive Daytime Sleepinessp. 312
Snoring Really Loudp. 312
Sleepwalkingp. 313
Eating in the Middle of the Night but Denying It in the Morningp. 314
Grinding Teethp. 314
Restlessly Moving Your Limbsp. 315
Unexplained Bruises or Other Injuries upon Awakeningp. 316
Cranky, Irritable Moodp. 316
Poor Judgment and Memory Lapsesp. 317
Recurrent Nightmaresp. 317
Chapter 17 Ten Tips to Help You Turn Your Bedroom into a Sleep Sanctuaryp. 319
Change the Lightingp. 319
Keep Cool with a Ceiling Fanp. 320
Get a Comfier Mattressp. 321
Paint the Walls a Soothing Colorp. 321
Add a Tabletop Fountainp. 322
Use an Aromatherapy Diffuserp. 322
Scent Your Bed Linensp. 323
"Home Office" Doesn't Mean "Bedroom Office"p. 323
Throw Out Decorative Items You Hatep. 324
Declutterp. 324
Appendix Resources and Productsp. 325
Finding Helpful Information Onlinep. 325
Sleep organization sitesp. 325
General information sitesp. 329
Purchasing Valuable Productsp. 330
Pillow coolerp. 330
Memory foam mattressesp. 330
Feather bedsp. 331
Dream pillowsp. 331
Jet lag visors and light boxesp. 331
Earplugsp. 332
Indexp. 333