Getting a good night’s sleep is the key to being alert, productive and focused during your day to day life. However, many Australians aren’t getting enough sleep, and often blame it on things such as stress, general exhaustion, or their partner snoring too loudly the night before.
Amcal Senior Pharmacist, James Nevile, says that lack of sleep can be an indicator of a more serious, underlying condition.
“Constant moving and shaking may be a symptom of a chronic sleeping disorder such as Sleep Apnoea, a condition known to affect close to 1.5 million Australians,” says James. “Sleep apnoea is a serious sleeping disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts, sometimes more than 100 times per hour. This condition affects up to two million Australians, yet more than two-thirds are undiagnosed and are living with the condition unknowingly.”
“It’s important that we watch for the warning signs of chronic sleep loss and fatigue. A sleep assessment score in a pharmacy or contacting your local GP for more information and advice is a good way to start.” Here, James tells us about the four signs that your lack of sleep might be something more serious.
1. Loud snoring
“If you find you or your partner are experiencing persistent snoring, it might be worth looking into it. This behaviour may be a sign of a breathing related disorder, which can lead to overall impaired of sleep quality and more generally, sleep deprivation.”
“Sleep apnoea can sound like snoring so it’s important to recognise the difference. As a first step, if you hear your significant other gasping for air or making choking sounds while asleep, this may be a sign of sleep apnoea.”
2. Poor concentration
“Constantly misplacing your wallet or purse may not mean that you’re losing your memory. Rather, it may be a sign that you are not able to concentrate accurately because your brain is not able to pay attention to what is going on to store this memory. If this persists, it may be one of the first symptoms you experience as a result of a chronic sleep disorder.”
3. Frequent visits to the bathroom
“If you’re finding yourself heading to the bathroom more than a few times each night, then it may be a nighttime symptom of chronic fatigue. The condition known as ‘nocturia,’ is also a common source of sleep loss and is when a person wakes one or more times during the night to urinate. If this sounds familiar, contact your local GP or pharmacist.
4. Irregular weight gains
If you’re finding that your body weight is increasing in line with consistent poor sleep quality, it may be partially due to poor sleep health. Poor sleep increases the risk of being overweight or obese, which in turn increases your risk of type 2 diabetes, and it may also present other long- term health risks such as cardiovascular disease and chronic fatigue.
For more information on advice on sleep advice and health, contact your local pharmacist or GP for a confidential discussion.
You might also like: