The RUH’s Respiratory Sleep team has marked World Sleep Day by raising awareness of sleep disorders that are caused by ongoing respiratory problems.
The specialist team cares for patients with problems related to Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) – a condition that interrupts your breathing when you are asleep.
Signs of OSA include: loud snoring, noisy and laboured breathing and repeated short periods where breathing is interrupted by gasping or snorting.
Geraldine O’Connell-Ramsay, Principal Respiratory Clinical Physiologist at the RUH said: “Sleep is essential for a person’s health and wellbeing, not getting enough affects your health, which can have a big impact on your quality of life and it increases the risk of developing certain conditions.
“If you think you have OSA, it’s important to visit your GP in case you need to be referred to a sleep specialist for further tests and treatment.”
The RUH’s Respiratory Sleep team has been running for more than 20 years and offers specialist diagnostic tests, initial assessments of sleep related disorders and treatments.
Geraldine said: “Our diagnostic sleep studies are performed daily to establish if patients have sleep disordered breathing. We give patients equipment to monitor their breathing whilst sleeping and based on these results consultants may refer the patients for treatment or organise a more detailed study.”
Treatment can include lifestyle changes or Mandibular repositioning devices (MRDs) focusing on reducing the number of breathing pauses you have when you’re asleep.
You should feel less sleepy during the day, have a better quality of life and reduce your risk of getting health complications and having accidents.
In February, the Respiratory Sleep Service won the Most Innovative Team of the Year at the Trust’s 2017 New Year’s Honours Awards.
The team was recognised for the extensive work undertaken to fine tune the service to provide a better experience for patients and ensure faster access for those who require the team’s help.