At the Sleep Therapy & Research Center in San Antonio, Texas, our sleep specialists will evaluate your sleep patterns to determine the source of your sleep problem and make a diagnosis. One of the best tests for detecting a sleep disorder is the overnight sleep study, or polysomnography. A sleep study measures your sleep cycles and stages by recording data from your body as your sleep.
The following is a guideline for how to prepare for the study, what to expect during the sleep study and what happens after the study.
Preparing for Your Sleep Study
Prior to your sleep study, do not drink any alcohol or caffeine the day of the test, but eat a normal dinner before you come in. Do not take a nap during the day. You may shower and wash your hair before arriving at the sleep lab, but do not use any body oils or lotions or any hair products such as gels or sprays. Bring your pajamas to sleep in, as well as any medications you need to take before bedtime. You can also bring your own pillow and blanket, if you’d like.
Be sure to complete and bring with you the paperwork and questionnaires we sent you. These forms gather self-reported information about your sleep habits and patterns and are essential in helping our sleep specialists diagnose your sleep problem.
What to Expect
You will arrive at the sleep lab in the evening and stay overnight. You will sleep in a private room similar to a hotel, so it’s dark and quiet during the test. Our sleep study technicians will monitor you from an area outside the room. In the room, there is an infrared camera so the technologists can see you when the lights are out. The room is also equipped with an audio system so they can hear you and talk to you.
Once you are ready for bed, the technicians will place electrodes on your head, chest and legs using a mild adhesive that washes off easily. The electrodes are connected by wires to a computer that will record your brain activity, eye movements, heart rate, breathing rate, the flow of air through your mouth and nose, snoring and body muscle movements. Also, a small clip will be placed on your finger to monitor your blood oxygen level. The wires are long and will be pulled back behind your head so that you can move and sleep as normally as possible.
You will be monitored throughout the night, for at least six hours. If you need to get up during the night, one of the technicians can come in to assist you.
After Your Sleep Study
Following your sleep study, it typically takes a week to receive your results. The polysomnologist technicians will use the recorded data to chart your sleep stages and cycles and then one of our sleep center doctors will review and evaluate the results. You will follow up with the doctor who referred you to our sleep center, and he or she will review the results with you and discuss treatment options.
If you’re tired of losing sleep because you have a sleep disorder, visit the Sleep Therapy & Research Center in San Antonio, Texas. Our physicians can diagnose the cause of your sleep disorder and recommend the optimal treatment for you. Call us today at (210) 614-6000 to schedule an appointment or use our convenient online appointment request form.
Home Sleep Testing
Home sleep testing, also known as Out of Center Testing is now more commonly available and may be required by your Insurance Company rather than going for an In Lab Sleep Test. Home Sleep Tests only assess for sleep disordered breathing (Sleep Apnea) and not other types of sleep disorders. Home sleep testing is usually performed if no other sleep disorder symptoms or other significant medical problems are present that may confound the study. If you are interested in this type of an evaluation, rather than sleeping away from home, please call us at 210-614-6000 for an appointment to see if you qualify.