In our age of amazing technological advancement and digital connectivity and convenience, we are more challenged than every by a lack of quantity and quality of sleep that is essential to human life.  A recent essay by David K. Randall discusses the epidemic levels of sleep disorders in the U. S., and our chronic collective tiredness.  The very technologies that are supposed to be making our lives easier are wreaking havoc with our ability to sleep.   The 24-hour “on” culture, fueled by personal technology makes it difficult to power down.  In addition, all this exposure to light – and the stimulation of the brain that comes with it – interfers with sleep.  In 2011 the National Sleep Foundation survey found that 95% of Americans use some type of electronic device in the hour prior to sleep. This nighttime exposure to light causes several problems that interfer with good quality of slep: *Prevents the body from producing melatonin, a hormone essential to sleep *The activity and light stimulate the mind at a time it needs to relax *These devices often enter the bedroom which should be a sanctuary for sleep and sex The Centers for Disease Control reports a third of working Americans sleep no more than 6 hours a day.  Not only is our society dngerously sleep deprived, when we are sleeping we are not sleeping well.  40% suffer from some insomnia each year, 15% chronic.  Obstructive sleep apnea, which we treat for Phoenix patients here at DesertSmiles is estimated to effect 20% of females and 40% percent of adult males.  Untreated, disrupted sleep can cause a number of significant health issues such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Randall’s essay points out our fundamental attitude toward sleep needs to change.  We still wear our sleep deprivation as a badge of honor.  There are no shortcuts to a healthy, sustainable sleep routine.  We need to start taking sleep a lot more seriously as a nation and individuals. For more information about snoring and sleep apnea solutions in Glendale and Peoria, visit  Oral appliance therapy is the best alternative for CPAP incompatibility.

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