Healthy sleep: what helps against sleep disorders


World Sleep Day: What helps against sleep disorders

Restful sleep is the basis for a relaxed, healthy life. However, around 45 percent of the world's population suffers from sleep disorders. Stress and other psychological stresses are often the cause of restless sleep. A particularly severe form of sleep disorder is obstructive sleep apnea, in which breathing interruptions can promote complications such as heart attack and stroke. On today's World Sleep Day, the Austrian Society for Sleep Medicine and Sleep Research (ÖGSM) talks to “Kurier.at” about the risks and treatment options for sleep disorders.

45 percent of the world's population suffers from sleep disorders. People “sleep through” about a third of their lives. However, this only applies to around 55 percent of the world's population. The rest of the time is plagued with sleep disorders, which can result in chronic fatigue, difficulty concentrating, reduced performance, an increased risk of accidents and depression. Everyone has to sleep in order to regenerate and relax. It is proven that sleep is even essential for survival. So far, however, scientists have been puzzled as to why this is so.

In patients with depression, sleep deprivation is occasionally used as an in-patient treatment. But it is also used as a torture method to turn off clear thinking and break the victim's will and inner resistance. This shows how serious a lack of sleep can affect the psyche.

“Sleep disorders can occur at any age - from infants to old age. On the one hand, they are the result of physical or mental illnesses, but on the other hand they can also trigger such illnesses. Some are even inheritable, "said Wolfgang Mallin, pulmonologist and President of the ÖGSM, to the online editorial team. A distinction is made between acute, usually only a few days, and chronic sleep disorders. The latter can occur over weeks or years. Like Gerhard Klösch from the University Clinic for Neurology at MedUni Vienna told the online editorial team that the Austrians sleep an average of about eight hours, with women resting 15 minutes longer. would sleep. "

Impaired sleep due to obstructive sleep apnea So-called obstructive sleep apnea is one of the most severe forms of sleep disorder. Breathing interruptions partially or even completely close the upper airways. The breathing stops cause a reduced oxygen supply. As a result, wake-up reactions occur repeatedly, which, however, usually do not lead to the person waking up, but merely to increase their body functions like an accelerated pulse. People with sleep apnea no longer recover during sleep and therefore often suffer from pronounced daytime fatigue. There is also another problem. "The risk of consequential damage such as a heart attack or stroke is high," Mallin reported. As a rule, therapy is either carried out with surgical measures or a special sleep mask (CPAP therapy) is used. so that misfires are prevented.

Sleep coaching can help with sleep disorders As reported on the Internet portal, non-organic sleep disorders can be treated with sleep coaching. A combination of hypnosis and Gestalt therapy is used. In this way, psychologist Brigitte Holzinger, head of the Institute for Consciousness and Dream Research, shows patients how they can change their sleeping behavior. Psychological problems are discussed and repression mechanisms are uncovered.

As Holzinger explains to the online editorial team, sleep disorders in men and women expressed themselves differently. “Women are mostly those who care for and care for people, such as children and the elderly. This often interrupts their night's sleep. "Sleep apnea occurs in both sexes, although the disease is often overlooked in women. Women suffered from sleep disorders especially during menopause and during pregnancy." It is a holistic problem. They experience an enormous hormonal change and a complete change in the life situation, "said the psychologist. (ag)

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