Trouble Sleeping? Don't sleep on it - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Trouble Sleeping? Don't sleep on it

Maxine Ridling
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, TX - Waking up several times during the night could potentially mean more than just a sleeping disorder. Not getting the recommended 8 hours of sleep could affect how you feel the next day, but if the sleeping problem continues it could affect the rest of your life.

Falling asleep and staying asleep isn't the only thing Cyndie Koetting can't remember. "It's been so long since I've had full nights sleep," Koetting said, "I don't remember what my personality was like before this."

Koetting was diagnosed with insomnia and restless leg syndrome 5 years ago, and she admits her sleep schedule is different than most.

"I'll fall asleep around 1:00 a.m. and it gives me about 2 hours of sleep I then get up at 3 and stay up until 6:30 and then I'll go back to sleep until about 9:00 a.m." said Koetting.

From there, she's up for the next 16 hours where she fights sleep all over again. She has tried what she feels like every possible sleep remedy she's heard of, "I've tried the hot milk, I've tried the warm baths, I've tried the strange music," Koetting said, "It just doesn't work for me!"

Director of ADC Sleep Disorders Centers, Dr. Gary Polk, says if you continue to not get enough sleep it could affect the way you think in the long run.

"Some people often notice forgetfulness or trouble with the memory probably because the frequent sleep disruptions," Dr. Polk said.

Even if you are prescribed sleep medication, Dr. Polk says that could still affect the way your memory works the next day. "There has been some association of patients actually waking up driving to work and really not remembering how they got there," Dr. Polk said.

If you are interested in having a sleep study done, make sure to document when you are tired throughout the day and when you wake up at night before going to the doctor. Depending on your weight and height, Dr. Polk said your sleeping troubles could be due to high blood pressure.

For now, Cyndie Koetting is prescribed Parkinson's Disease medication to help her get 1 extra hour of sleep at night.

"It helps with my restless leg syndrome," Koetting said, "But it still doesn't put me to sleep the entire night."

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