When Your Partner Has a Sleep Disorder
Help Your Partner Manage the Sleep Disorder continued...
In some instances, a loved one is the only reason someone agrees to follow through with the medical treatment plan for a sleep disorder. So encourage your significant other to comply with doctor's orders and take any prescribed medications. If your partner struggles with sleep apnea and has been told to use a continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machine overnight, gently remind your partner to put the mask on before falling asleep. It could save your sleep -- and your partner's life. If the noise of the CPAP machine keeps you up, consider moving the base unit somewhere else in the room, using a white noise machine, or wearing earplugs to lessen the sound.
And remember, it's always an option to have separate bedrooms until your partner's sleep disorder is under control.
Connect With Other People Dealing With Sleep Disorders
When you and your partner are in the throes of a sleep disorder, it's easy to feel like you're the only ones struggling with the situation. But sleep disorders affect more than 40 million Americans each year. So you're not alone.
It can be extremely helpful for you to connect with other people going through the same thing. Keep an eye out for support groups you can join locally and online. For example, the American Sleep Apnea Association A.W.A.K.E. Network consists of sleep apnea support groups around the country. Through it you can find a group near you where you can learn more about everything from CPAP usage to the latest research results. The American Sleep Association also provides online support group forums for sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, narcolepsy, and insomnia.