Published on October 14, 2013

Having trouble falling asleep?

The Sleep Disorders Center at Mercy Fitzgerald can help.

If you’re not sleeping well at night, chances are your days aren’t going well either.

Poor quality sleep affects concentration, the ability to make decisions, work performance, interactions with family and co-workers, one’s ability to drive safely—essentially, all daily activity.

And those who aren’t sleeping soundly could face serious health consequences.

“It’s important to look at sleep as an important component of good health,” explains Ajay Pillai, MD, medical director of the Sleep Disorders Center at Mercy Fitzgerald. “Long-term, inadequate sleep is tied to depression, anxiety and weight gain.”

Poor sleep can also lead to increased alcohol use, he warns, as well as higher blood pressure, and a higher risk of heart attack and stroke.

If you are having trouble sleeping at night, think of Dr. Pillai and the Sleep Disorders Center. After all, occasional sleepless nights are common. But ongoing sleepless nights could signal a sleep disorder, such as sleep apnea or insomnia.

The good news is there are solutions for these disorders, once they are identified. Dr. Pillai and his team are standing by to help make sure you are clocking the ZZZs you need.

How to get the sleep you need

Dr. Pillai advises at least seven hours of sleep a night and offers these tips to help you fall asleep and stay asleep:

  • Have a regular bedtime.
  • Don’t work or watch TV in bed.
  • Avoid exercise late in the day if you have insomnia.
  • Avoid caffeine after 2 p.m.
  • Address health problems that could disrupt sleep, such as acid reflux or asthma.