If you or a loved one are suffering from sleep apnea, an appointment with a sleep specialist like Dr. Bell is critical to diagnosis and treatment. However, these appointments can be short, leaving patients very little time for searching their memory for things you would like to share with your doctor. Consequently, it is a good idea to prepare for your appointment ahead of time. Here’s some important information to help you get ready for your appointment, know what to expect from your doctor, and prepare for your sleep apnea diagnosis.
We recommend that our patients keep a diary related to their sleep apnea. Here are some of the things we suggest you keep track of:
1) Start with writing down your symptoms, any recent or long-term lifestyle practices, changes or modifications to diet, sleep, and daily functions.
2) Patients should also write down any personal information that could impact your current health, diet, exercise, and daily activities should be recorded.
3) Make a list of medications, vitamins or supplements that you take or have recently taken. If you have had any type of surgery, this should also be included.
4) Ask your doctor if there is anything you need to do in advance, like modify your diet or bring something with you to your appointment.
5) Ask a family member or someone that knows your sleep habits to verify what is happening with your sleep schedule.
6) Write down any additional questions you can think of to ask your doctor.
Sleep apnea can be a complicated issue that includes many different factors, which is why it’s critical to think about questions you may want answered ahead of time. Here are some basic questions you might want to ask your primary care doctor before seeking treatment:
Here are some questions your doctor may ask during your evaluation:
1) Can you remember when you started experiencing sleep apnea symptoms? How often do you experience these symptoms? Do they stay the same or change?
2) How severe are your sleep apnea symptoms? Do they disrupt your life? Your ability to function during daily activities?
3) Has your partner experienced your symptoms? Can they describe them?
4) Do you stop breathing during sleep? If so, how many times does this happen during the night?
5) Is there anything that seems to make your symptoms better or worse, sleep positions or alcohol consumption?
If symptoms are not severe, we sometimes recommend that patients attempt some home remedies prior to seeing a doctor. First, try to sleep on your side instead of your back. Patients should also avoid alcohol, tobacco products, and sedative medications close to bedtime. If you’re drowsy, avoid driving. If you have sleep apnea you may be abnormally sleepy, which can put you at higher risk of motor vehicle accidents. Another common remedy we suggest is to lose weight. This can often help patients breathe better and gain some measure of relief.
If you are suffering from sleep apnea, don’t wait to get treatment. If you have questions about the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatments for sleep apnea, we are here to help. Please feel free to check out the rest of our informative sleep apnea website or call our office for more information. Patients in the Hallam, PA area, can be referred to Dr. Bell to help restore healthy and restful sleep. Now is the time to treat your sleep apnea and get back to a healthy and happy lifestyle! Call us today for a sleep apnea consultation.
450 W Market St
Hallam, PA 17406
Monday: 8AM – 5PM
Tuesday: 8AM – 5PM
Wednesday: 10AM - 7PM
Thursday: 7:30AM – 4:30PM