In 2007 a phenomenon began: the global conglomerate Netflix launched the online streaming capabilities of movie watching. The company would also go on to carry previously aired content from other networks and created a new niche in program viewing called “binge-watching.” The problem with the latter is that it can impede on you getting the necessary rest for your body and mind to rejuvenate. Thus, your local expert in sleep dentistry in Arlington Heights is weighing in with information on how to not fall victim to the pitfalls of restless nights.
How Can Binge-Watching Hinder Your Sleep?
There once was a time when your favorite television show would air an episode that ended with a climatic situation, and you’d have to wait to the following week to see how it would unfold. But now with an entire season available on Netflix, there’s no need to suffer the agony of waiting on the next episode to be broadcast, because you can just tap a button on your remote to continue viewing.
One of the problems that can arise is that you can lose track of time, and before you know it, you’ve gone well past your bedtime. Thus, you are forced to awaken the next morning deprived of sleep.
Are Netflix and Sleep Apnea Related?
When you take a moment to consider some of the harmful side effects of binge-watching, you’ll find that they mirror those of sleep apnea. But first, let’s establish a working definition of the latter.
Sleep apnea is the periodic interrupted breathing that occurs throughout the night that inhibits sleep, causing the person suffering to partially awaken throughout a sleep cycle.
Here are some of the shared symptoms of sleep apnea and rest deprivation due to binge-watching:
- Consistent daytime exhaustion or fatigue
- Trouble focusing or remembering
- Moods swings or depression
- Sexual dysfunction
The following symptoms, though, are specific to sleep apnea:
- Persistent, loud snoring
- Waking up out of breath or gasping for air
- Morning headaches, sore throat, or dry mouth
Is There a Way to Treat Sleep Apnea and Rest Deprivation?
Sleep apnea therapy in Arlington Heights provides a way to correct the ills of sleep deprivation due to binge-watching and sleep apnea by encouraging the following changes in your viewing habits:
- Set an episode limit on your Netflix watching.
- Take a break between episodes.
- Schedule designated times to watch your favorite shows.
- Make an effort to stop watching episodes at least an hour before retiring for bed to allow your brain to wind down.
- It’s best to watch your shows on a television instead of your smartphone, giving that it’ll usually be closer to you while you sleep. Thus, you’ll be more likely to binge-watch because of the convenience.
Other Ways Your Dentist Treats Sleep Apnea
For treatment specific to any breathing obstructions related to sleep apnea, you can consult with your dentist about the possibility of getting a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine to keep your airways open while you sleep. Another option is to be fitted with the less cumbersome oral appliance that fits comfortably in your mouth.
By making a few small changes and reaching out to your local professional for help, you can soon be back to getting the rest you need to be a healthy and productive person!
About the Author
A graduate of the Indiana School of Dentistry, Dr. Brian Zulawinski has been practicing dentistry for nearly 20 years. Still, he remains driven to know and grow more by taking hours of continuing education courses annually in the area of sleep apnea. As a strong advocate of medical ethics, Dr. Zulawinski only offers the treatments he knows are in the best interest of his patients at his Sleep Better practice. He can be reached for more information through his website.