Recurring sleep issues can begin to harm your overall health and well-being. If you have been experiencing sleep problems, you might be thinking that undergoing a sleep test is a useful first step in correcting the issue. If you have reached the point where it’s time to address the problem, you may now be wondering which sleep test is best for you. The criteria listed below provide comprehensive diagnoses that can identify the problem for your medical team to prescribe an effective treatment.
The most common type of sleep tests
Polysomnogram tests are typically the first test used to diagnose sleep disorders and can determine if you have a sleep disorder or not. Patients who are suffering from lousy sleep experiences but are unsure if the condition rises to the level of a disorder take this type of test. The test measures brain, muscle, and breathing activity to provide a comprehensive look at the subject’s sleep patterns.
Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT)
Patients who experience extreme tiredness during the day are typically tested using an MSLT. It is a useful tool in determining if the subject suffers from conditions such as idiopathic hypersomnia or narcolepsy.
Patients who experience extreme breathing disorders that hurt their sleep are usually given a CPAP titration. This test is conducted at a medical sleep facility and is an effective way to determine pauses in breathing. This test will also detect any obstruction of the subject’s airways.
Maintenance of Wakefulness Test (MWT)
This test is used during the day as it measures the level of alertness in the subject. This test is useful as a measure to see how well ongoing sleep disorder treatments are doing. For example, someone who is using a CPAP machine but still feels tired may benefit from an MWT.
Split Night Study
This test combines both the polysomnogram and the CPAP titration tests. Combing these tests allow the subject to undergo diagnosis and determine the titration for their CPAP in one night. It’s useful for anyone reluctant to spend more than one night in a sleep lab. It is commonly used for people with sleep apnea and other disorders that include blockages of the subject’s airways. The first part of the night is diagnostic, and the second part sets up the patient’s CPAP titration.
The above tests represent some of the most common sleep tests, and for whom they are best suited. Of course, your doctor or healthcare provider is best equipped to determine which study is the best fit for your needs. Sleep studies are nothing to be afraid of as they provide vital diagnostic information that allows your medical team to formulate the most effective treatment possible.
Good, quality sleep is essential for your overall health, and if you aren’t getting the restful and restorative sleep that you need, it’s time to take action!