What to Expect Inside a Sleep Apnea Lab

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When you arrive at the sleep lab, the technician will welcome you and take you back. We recommend that when you come to the sleep lab, you should be dressed in comfortable clothes, usually a two-piece pajama suit. We tell patients not to wear a nightgown for their own privacy reasons. If you have a special pillow or a blanket that you like to sleep with, then you should bring that to the sleep lab as well.

If you have medications that you take at night, you should bring them with you to the sleep lab and take the medications after you come to the sleep lab, not before. When you arrive at the sleep lab, because it's a new environment and you have all these hooks and monitors on you, people do generally have difficulty falling asleep, so I do recommend that the patients ask their doctors to give them a sleep aid.

We also recommend that you do not wear make up and do not drink caffeine. Avoid taking naps so that when you come to the lab you are extremely tired and easy to fall asleep. We also recommend that you bring a pair of clothes for the next morning. Most of the sleep labs do have a shower. So they can shower in the morning. And if they have to go to work, they can go to work from there.

If you need to go to the bathroom during a sleep study, it's very simple. You just signal to the technician. There is a technician always monitoring you. Theyll come disconnect you from the equipment. You can get up, use the bathroom, and then just come back and they'll hook you back again.

Sleep studies are usually done at night. But if you are a night-shift worker then you can be accommodated and the study can be done during the daytime. There really shouldn't be any worry or anxiety in coming to a sleep lab. There are other patients. There are technicians who will be closely monitoring you. You will be in a very safe environment. So really, you should leave all your worries at home and come ready to sleep in the lab.