An educational program with the principal objective of offering an overview of sleep as well as the associated disorders in a bid to improve the level of awareness and the opportunities for nurses will be offered by the Texas School of Medicine and Technology. This is hoped to equip the nurses with the required knowledge in all the fields of medicine that they practice. This is critical and has been highlighted as being essential in fostering the importance of sleep and its health benefits. This will be achieved by ensuring that the nurses can identify the signs and the accompanying symptoms of sleep disorders. This is in addition to promoting the advocacy for a sleeping health policy for their patients.
One of the most common sleeping disorders is sleep apnea. This is a disorder in which the individual experiences pauses in their breathing and other periods of infrequent and shallow breathing. Each of the apneas has been found to last for a number of minutes up to at least five times in an hour during the sleep period. This disorder has been classified under the category of dyssomnia and this means that an abnormality in the psychological process is exhibited.
Dangers of Sleep Apnea
Normally, the brain relies on the breathed in oxygen for its functions. Individuals with the disorder will have an accumulation of carbon dioxide in their blood stream during the pauses. The chemoreceptors that are present in the blood stream will essentially detect the high levels of carbon dioxide and this will force the person to wake up. On waking up, the person’s breathing will be normal with intake of oxygen and they will fall asleep again. Such interruption in the sleep patterns has been found to have a number of health risks in addition to altering the daily routine activities of the individual.
The condition is classified into three categories depending on the number of reported and recorded cases. Central, obstructive and mixed sleep apneas have all been documented with the last one being the most common. However, the individual with this sleeping disorder will not notice that they have a problem in their breathing even after waking up. The people watching the person sleeping are the ones who will identify it as a concern since they can practically observe the strain that is experienced and the interruptions in the sleep.
It is important to treat sleep apnea as early as possible. This is because of a number of both medical and social issues. From a medical perspective, the interruption will affect the body’s ability to regenerate new cells, a process that takes place mostly at night and this will have a negative effect on the individual’s growth and development. Socially, the individual will have a considerably higher probability of being moody with a decreased sense of inactiveness as compared to a person with a healthy sleeping pattern. The effects may be extremely hard to deal with in extreme cases and have been known to lead to depression and a higher risk of getting diabetes.