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Overnight Sleep Study FAQ

Polysomnogram Services in Berlin, MD

If you are having difficulty sleeping or experience excessive fatigue during the day, your doctor will likely recommend an overnight sleep study, also known as a polysomnogram. These studies allow sleep specialists to monitor your vital signs and rapid eye movement (REM) while sleeping. After analyzing the results of the exam, they send their findings to your doctor who will use it to diagnose your sleep disorder and start a treatment plan.

Who needs an overnight sleep study?

Overnight sleep studies are often recommended for patients dealing with:

  • Sleep apnea and other sleep-related breathing disorders
  • Patients who need adjustments to their continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices
  • Patients who have a hard time staying awake during the day (possible cases of narcolepsy)
  • Patients who say they sleep through the night but still feel abnormally fatigued during the day

You might also need an overnight sleep study if you are being treated for a sleep disorder but have yet to see any results.

Will I be sleeping in an exam room?

Sleep study rooms are designed to create a home-like feel. You will stay in a dimly lit room with a comfortable bed and furnishings. There will be no other patients in the room with you, and aside from noninvasive electrodes taped to the skin to monitor vital signs, the experience is designed to feel no different than sleeping in your own home.

What happens during the study?

You will arrive at the sleep center in the evening. Our team will go above and beyond to provide you with a comfortable space where you can relax. Sensors will be placed on the forehead, chin, and face to monitor brain waves and vital signs. These sensors are taped on and should not be painful.

You can read or watch TV until you are ready to sleep. The lights will then be turned out and you will lie in bed until you fall asleep. You are alone in the room, with our sleep technicians monitoring from a nearby room via a video camera.

If you need to go to the bathroom or a sensor falls of while sleeping, the technician will need to come in and reattach it.

In the morning, the sensors will be removed and you can return home while our physicians study the results.

When will I have the results?

It usually takes about two weeks for results to be analyzed. Our board-certified sleep specialist will review the information and share the results with your physician.

What happens next?

The purpose of the sleep study is to diagnose the cause of your difficulty sleeping. With this information in hand, your doctor can create a personalized treatment plan to help you get back on a regular schedule.

You may be asked to return for a Maintenance of Wakefulness Test once you’ve started treatment to ensure that the desired results are achieved.