As many as 70 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders. It’s not surprising that 10 to 20 percent of adults use over-the-counter sleep aids.
While these medications may be easy to purchase, Arun Agarwal, MD, FCCP, FAASM, Medical Director of the Sleep Disorders Center at Putnam Hospital Center, warns that not only do these drugs fail to permanently correct the problem, they often cause unwanted side effects.
“Poor sleep is just like any other medical disorder,” Dr. Agarwal says. “The first step should be getting a proper diagnosis from a medical professional who can guide you to interventions designed to correct the underlying cause with a goal of lasting relief.”
Dr. Agarwal is able to help many patients by recommending good sleep hygiene—a set of habits designed to help you fall and stay asleep. They include:
- Having a set bedtime
- Creating a cool, dark sleep place
- Avoiding caffeine, alcohol and decongestants after midday
- Getting plenty of physical activity during the day
- Limiting screen time before bed
Talk with your primary care provider about a referral to Health Quest Sleep Medicine:
Northern Dutchess Hospital Sleep Center (845) 871-3611 Barbara Chatr-Aryamontri, MD, Medical Director 6511 Springbrook Avenue Rhinebeck, NY 12572
Putnam Hospital Center for Sleep Medicine (845) 838-8160 Arun Agarwal, MD, Medical Director 670 Stoneleigh Avenue Carmel, NY 10512
Vassar Brothers Center for Sleep Medicine (845) 838-8160 Mohammed Aziz, MD, Medical Director VBMC Medical Mall Fishkill 200 Westage Business Center Drive, Suite 234 Fishkill, NY 12524