Pittsburgh Sleep Evaluation Program

We treat the cause. . . not the symptom

Sleep Evaluation and Sleep Disorder Treatment

Sleep Testing and Treatment Importance

Sleep disorder treatment has become a prevalent need among many adults in the US. It is estimated that 49% of adult Americans have sleeping problems, either going to sleep or staying asleep.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, “persons experiencing sleep insufficiency are also more likely to suffer from chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression and obesity, as well as from cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of life and productivity.” You may be asking yourself "Why can't I sleep?" and we, at the Hormone Center in Pittsburgh, hope to help you find answers.

How much sleep do we need?

  • Infants: 16 hours per day.
  • School age children: 10 hours
  • Adolescents: 5 – 9.5 hours
  • Adults: 7 – 9 hours
  • Seniors: 6 – 8 hours

How much sleep do we get?

  • Over 40% of adults sleep less than 7 hours.
  • Over 40% of night shift workers sleep less than 6 hours.
  • Over 30% of all adult workers get less than 6 hours.
  • 70% of adolescents are sleep deprived.

Important Sleep Statistics:

  • If you sleep for less than 5 hours, its equivalent to a blood alcohol level of .05 (.08 is considered drunk for DUI purposes).
  • 2/3 of Americans don’t feel well rested.
  • 1 in 5 car accidents are a result of drowsy driving.
  • 3 in 10 people will fall asleep at their desks this month.
  • Sleeping an average of less than 6 hours per night increases lifetime heart attack risk by 50%, and stroke risk by 4 times, in people over 45.
  • A lack of sleep can cause a person to feel 25% hungrier which is equivalent to an extra 350-500 calories per day (or a cheeseburger per day).

Physiological Effects of a Lack of Sleep

  • 62% higher risk of breast cancer
  • 48% higher risk of heart disease
  • 5 times higher risk of diabetes
  • 3 times higher risk of catching a cold due to impaired immunity
  • 4 times higher risk of stroke
  • 5 times higher risk of developing depression.

Sleep Apnea, Insomnia and Sleep Disorder Treatment

Disturbed sleep can leave a person drowsy throughout the day and reduce cognitive functioning. The Sleep Program at the Hormone Center would like to help you determine what factors may be preventing you from getting the optimum number of hours of sleep, and together we develop a treatment plan to improve your sleep. Many people in this fast-pace life want to know how to cure sleep apnea and find insomnia relief, and at the Hormone Center, we understand the many factors that contribute to poor sleep, and help identify the cause. Whether you are suffering from insomnia, sleep apnea, narcolepsy, or other sleep problems, we establish treatment which fits your individual needs. Sleep studies have shown important links between getting enough sleep and reducing chronic disease, including many cognitive disorders. Sleeping disorders prevent many from living their best, happiest life. If you are concerned about improving your sleep, and would like tips to sleep better, contact the Hormone Center today.

How Sleep Deprivation Increases Your Alzheimer’s Risk (from NPR)

While the brain sleeps, it clears out harmful toxins, a process that may reduce the risk of Alzheimer's, researchers say. During sleep, the flow of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain increases dramatically, washing away harmful waste proteins that build up between brain cells during waking hours, a study of mice found.

"It's like a dishwasher," says Dr. Maiken Nedergaard, a professor of neurosurgery at the University of Rochester and an author of the study in Science.

The results appear to offer the best explanation yet of why animals and people need sleep. If this proves to be true in humans as well, it could help explain a mysterious association between sleep disorders and brain diseases, including Alzheimer's. Nedergaard and a team of scientists discovered the cleaning process while studying the brains of sleeping mice. The scientists noticed that during sleep, the system that circulates cerebrospinal fluid through the brain and nervous system was "pumping fluid into the brain and removing fluid from the brain in a very rapid pace," Nedergaard says.

The team discovered that this increased flow was possible in part because when mice went to sleep, their brain cells actually shrank, making it easier for fluid to circulate. When an animal woke up, the brain cells enlarged again and the flow between cells slowed to a trickle. "It's almost like opening and closing a faucet," Nedergaard says. "It's that dramatic."

Nedergaard's team, which is funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, had previously shown that this fluid was carrying away waste products that build up in the spaces between brain cells. The process is important because what's getting washed away during sleep are waste proteins that are toxic to brain cells, Nedergaard says. This could explain why we don't think clearly after a sleepless night and why a prolonged lack of sleep can actually kill an animal or a person, she says.

So why doesn't the brain do this sort of housekeeping all the time? Nedergaard thinks it's because cleaning takes a lot of energy. "It's probably not possible for the brain to both clean itself and at the same time [be] aware of the surroundings and talk and move and so on," she says. It could offer a new way of understanding human brain diseases including Alzheimer's. That's because one of the waste products removed from the brain during sleep is beta amyloid, the substance that forms sticky plaques associated with the disease. That's probably not a coincidence, Nedergaard says. "Isn't it interesting that Alzheimer's and all other diseases associated with dementia, they are linked to sleep disorders," she says.

Researchers who study Alzheimer's say Nedergaard's research could help explain a number of recent findings related to sleep. One of these involves how sleep affects levels of beta amyloid, says Randall Bateman, a professor of neurology Washington University in St. Louis who wasn't involved in the study.

"Beta amyloid concentrations continue to increase while a person is awake," Bateman says. "And then after people go to sleep that concentration of beta amyloid decreases. This report provides a beautiful mechanism by which this may be happening."

The report also offers a tantalizing hint of a new approach to Alzheimer's prevention, Bateman says. "It does raise the possibility that one might be able to actually control sleep in a way to improve the clearance of beta amyloid and help prevent amyloidosis that we think can lead to Alzheimer's disease."

How Sleep Deprivation Effects Human Growth Hormone

In children, Human Growth Hormone (HGH) helps them grow.  In adults, HGH helps the body repair itself. Your body is relaxed during sleep, but your brain is at its most active state. While the rest of your muscles are at rest, your brain keeps on signaling tissue repairs, sorting through memories and releasing hormones. During sleep, the pituitary gland secretes 75 percent of the HGH that your body usually makes. The pituitary gland needs a trigger to release a surge of HGH and this trigger is the REM stage of sleep. This also means that missing out a lot of sleep would affect the overall output of the hormone.

- from HGH Exclusive


Contact Us

The Hormone Center



102 Broadway Street

Suite 101

Carnegie, Pa 15106