Sleep studies can be unnerving, even if you are taking one in your own bed. One thing that people worry about is, what if I can’t sleep during a sleep study? After all the time and preparation, the last thing you want is to have a bought of insomnia. Next are some tips to help you prepare and relieve your anxiety.
How to Prepare for Your Sleep Study
If your doctor has determined that you need a sleep study, the test should be done during your normal sleep time. For example, if you work the night shift, then your study should be performed during the day.
Ask your doctor any questions that you have before your test. On the day of your study, ask to see the equipment and have them tell you what it does. Most of the time, the sleep technicians do this anyway. If they don’t, feel free to ask. They can address any special needs as well as relieve some of your nervousness.
Day of the Study
Other things you can do to prepare for the test are to promote successful conditions that will help you sleep. For example, you can set your alarm to get up a little earlier than usual. You will have more waking hours that will promote good sleep that night. Of course, avoid taking a nap that day as well.
Also, avoid caffeine. Skip that second cup of coffee in the morning. Have an active day and follow your regular exercise routine. Eat according to your regular diet, including dinner before you report to your sleep study. Sometime during the day, take some time out to relax. Read a book or watch a movie, anything that relaxes your mind and body.
If you are taking your sleep test at home, then go to bed at your regular time or stay up a little later if that will help. The goal is to be drowsy because you have to sleep with the equipment attached to you.
If You Can’t Fall Asleep
Even if you normally have no problem falling asleep, you may have trouble during your sleep study. Because you must sleep in order to be evaluated, this can cause some anxiety that keeps you awake.
To offset this, lie in your typical sleeping position. There’s no need to lie flat on your back unless that is your habit. The wires and other equipment attached to you can be unsettling, but it won’t hurt you and you can’t break them. Do your best to ignore it and focus on relaxing your body.
If you know any breathing or relaxation techniques, try them. If you don’t, try to focus on something simple, like the plotline of your favorite movie. All of these relax your muscles and focus your concentration away from the sleep study. If you wake during the night, avoid checking your phone or turning on lights.
Medication for When You Can’t Sleep During a Sleep Study
If you absolutely can’t sleep during your study, you may be able to take a sleeping pill. This is one of the questions to ask ahead of time. Unless you take a prescription sleep aid regularly, you’ll be able to use a light over the counter medication like melatonin or Benadryl.
Even a Few Hours Is OK
The good news is that, even if you get very little sleep the night of your sleep study, depending on your condition, a few hours of data may be all your physician needs to be able to make a diagnosis. If for some reason, after all your preparation and relaxation techniques, you don’t sleep a wink, your sleep clinic can always reschedule. They understand that it happens and will work with you to try again.
Scheduling a Sleep Study in Jacksonville, FL
At Jacksonville Sleep Center, we offer contactless at-home sleep studies. The equipment is delivered to your door with detailed instructions, and when you’re done, you simply drop the package back off at your nearest UPS. We do our best to take the anxiety out of taking a sleep study, so you can focus on relaxing. To schedule your at-home or in-office sleep study, contact us today.