Simple solutions for a good night’s sleep - Ep. 12

May 10, 2021
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Good health is intertwined with good sleep. How have you been sleeping?

Sleep allows humans to recharge. It helps restore a natural chemical balance in our bodies.

You know how it feels when you don’t get enough sleep? Contrast that with how you feel when you get a great night’s sleep.

Sleep is as vital as food and oxygen for life and good health. 

So how can we get better sleep? First look at your pre-bedtime habits. There are a number of things that can thwart our natural sleep cues (such as binge-watching television or endlessly scrolling social media).

Does the room temperature make a difference in our sleep? Is there a bedtime that’s best for adults? If you take a nap, does it ruin your night’s sleep? Is it bad if you snore?

In this episode, host Mark Gomez, MD, and his guest, Alan Kominsky MD, FACS, uncover the truth about sleep, including how we end up derailing our natural sleepiness and how to get better rest.

  • Alan Kominsky, MD, FACS - Double board-certified in otolaryngology and sleep medicine; Assistant Professor of Surgery at Cleveland Clinic; Head & Neck Institute Residency Program Director and Head, Section of Surgical Sleep & Snoring. 

Myths vs. Facts

“Most adults need between 7-9 hours of sleep each night for optimum performance, health and safety.” – Fact
A lack of sleep can adversely impact virtually all systems of the body.

“Naps do not make up for chronic sleep loss or poor-quality nighttime sleep.” – Fact
When you sleep, you need to cycle through various stages for the rest to be restorative. Your sleep cycle can last 2-3 hours several times a night. If you take frequent, short naps, you don’t go through all the cycles.

“Diagnostic sleep studies are underutilized in this country.” – Fact
Most people with sleep apnea are undiagnosed. It doesn’t necessary mean that physicians are underusing sleep studies, but likely a small percentage of the population who has sleep apnea has been tested.

“Surgery is the surest way to fix obstructive sleep apnea.” – Myth
None of the treatments for obstructive sleep apnea are 100 percent effective. If you can use a CPAP, then that’s most effective. Surgery is probably 85-90 percent successful.

“Wearing a CPAP mask makes me look unattractive.” – Myth
If you take a photo of someone before they were treated with CPAP and compare that to how they look after they’ve been treated, they look healthy, restored.

“Everyone who snores has sleep apnea and everyone who has sleep apnea snores.” – Myth
Everyone who snores does not have sleep apnea, but everyone who has sleep apnea snores.

“Sleep apnea is a man’s condition.” – Myth
Men and women can experience sleep apnea. It is more common in men, but more women develop sleep apnea after menopause.

“Lying on your side can help with obstructive sleep apnea symptoms.” – Depends
FACT, for people with positional sleep apnea. This would need to be confirmed through sleep testing.

“Getting tested for obstructive sleep apnea is both scary and a hassle.” – Myth
Sleep studies are the most comfortable way to diagnose a problem.

“I snore, but I feel fine. I do not need to get it checked out.” – Myth
You definitely need to get it checked out.

“Snoring can mess with your mood.” - Fact
If you have a bed partner and they’re not sleeping, that will mess with your mood.

“My bed partner must deal with my snoring.” – Myth
There should be a collaborative effort to make sure everyone is healthy.


Listener healthy OH-YEAH!

“I have dropped my BMI by 2 points so far in the last 6 months. The goal is to continue dropping until I hit the healthy range. I am about 98% plant-based and loving it!” – E.P.

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