According to new research, falling asleep on the job may not be uncommon among police officers across the USA and Canada. Rearchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital screened 5,000 officers and found some 40% tested positive for at least one sleep disorder – the majority of which had gone previously undiagnosed.
Obstructive sleep apnea(OSA) was the most common disorder – affecting more than 30% of the officers. 6% were found to have moderate to severe insomnia. Phoenix dentist Dr. Donald Wilcox offers snoring and sleep apnea solutions with mouthpieces ( oral applaince therapy) for patients from Glendale, Phoenix and Scottsdale. For more information visit www.DesertSmiles.com.
50% of the officers reported having fallen asleep at the wheel at least once. 25% said they fell asleep while driving once or twice a month. Officers who screened positive for at least one sleep disorder had more performance issues. They also had higher rates of depression. Officers with sleep apnea had greater risk of diabetes and heart disease, especially high blood pressure.
“The notion that sleep deprivation and sleep disorders have consequences for physical health is something that has only been recognized in the past 10-15 years,” said Dr. Charles Czeisler, director of sleep medicine at Harvard Medical School and one of the authors. Czeisler siad that the next step is not only to continue screening for sleep disorders, but to develp programs that help curb them. “The disorder that we identifies are eminently treatable,” he said. “That’s the good news.”
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine states in its practice guidelines that oral appliance therapy is the first line of treatment for mild to moderate sleep apnea, and non complianct CPAP patients. For patients in Glendale and Phoenix DesertSmiles provides snoring and sleep apnea solutions with oral appliance therapy. Call 602-978-1790 to see if you are a candidate for better sleep and better health.