Sleep Center

The Sleep Center at HCA Houston Healthcare North Cypress is accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine Our center features six private bedrooms with state-of-the-art diagnostic and monitoring equipment.

Our Sleep Center was designed with your comfort in mind. To better your night’s sleep we provide the following amenities:

  • Recently updated bedrooms
  • First-class bedding and a luxurious robe
  • Calming lotion
  • Breakfast from our cafeteria

Our bedrooms include advanced equipment that record brain waves, breathing patterns, heart rate, muscle movement and other functions to uncover sleep problems. This assists in the diagnosis and treatment of a full range of sleep disorders in adult patients and pediatric patients as young as five years old.

For more information about our Sleep Center, please call us at (832) 912-3700.

Sleep disorders treated

At the Sleep Center, our priorities are to properly diagnose and treat your sleep disorder. There are many different types of sleep disorders that affect us. Some deal with breathing disorders while others are related to the movement of our extremities while we sleep. The following are some of the sleep disorders we diagnose and treat.

Circadian rhythm disorders

The circadian rhythm refers to the human body’s internal clock. This clock regulates the approximate 24-hour cycle of biological processes. It is responsible for variations in the sleep-wake cycle, temperature regulation and the endocrine system. A person’s circadian rhythm can be linked to patterns of brain wave activity, hormone production, cell regeneration and other biological activities. Disruptions in the normal rhythm can cause the “internal clock” to cause disruptions in sleep behavior.

Possible causes of circadian rhythm disorders include:

  • Shift work
  • Pregnancy
  • Time zone changes
  • Medications
  • Changes in routine
  • Jet lag

Circadian rhythm disorders are treatable, and treatment options are based on the diagnosis and cause of the disorder. The ultimate goal is to help the person return to a sleep pattern that fits their lifestyle.

Insomnia

Americans list insomnia as their number one sleep complaint. Insomnia can be acute or chronic, for most people bouts of sleeplessness occur for a short period of time, followed by a return to normal sleep patterns. For others, it can be a cycle of sleeplessness resulting in exacerbation of the underlying cause of the insomnia.

For those with chronic insomnia, it is essential to diagnose the cause. While insomnia itself can be a disorder, it is typically a symptom of another problem such as stress and anxiety or an underlying medical condition.

Narcolepsy

For most people, sleep happens in cycles. We start with a light stage of sleep and progress into deeper stages. After about 90 minutes of sleep, we enter the first stage of REM, or rapid eye movement, which is the dreaming portion of sleep. We alternate between stages of REM and non-REM sleep throughout the night.

For those with narcolepsy, sleep begins almost immediately with REM sleep and can occur involuntarily throughout waking hours. Because episodes of involuntary sleep can occur at any time, people with this disorder may fall asleep during normal activities. The most common symptom of narcolepsy is excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) which affects normal activities on a daily basis whether or not the person has had a sufficient amount of sleep. EDS has been described as a constant state of mental cloudiness, a lack of energy, a depressed mood or exhaustion. Many people affected by EDS say they have difficulty concentrating at work or school, while others may experience some memory lapses.

Periodic limb movements in sleep (PLMS)

PLMS are repetitive movements occurring most typically in the lower limbs about every 20 to 40 seconds. Characteristics of PLMS can include brief muscle twitches, jerking movements or an upward flexing of the feet. These episodes may last anywhere from a few minutes to several hours. Many times, a person with PLMS may not even realize they are moving their limbs during sleep until it is brought to their attention by their bed mate.

PLMS is not considered medically serious, and, in some cases, it may be a secondary indicator of other medical conditions such as kidney disease, diabetes or anemia. PLMS can also contribute to chronic insomnia and/or daytime fatigue due to awakenings during the night.

Restless leg syndrome (RLS)

Restless leg syndrome is characterized by an urge to move the legs, often accompanied by an uncomfortable sensation in the legs, described as:

  • A creeping or crawling feeling
  • Tingling
  • Cramping
  • Burning
  • Pain
  • A feeling of needing to move

The discomfort is generally temporarily relieved with movement or pressure.

Patients typically seek advice from a physician for this disorder due to sleep disturbances, which range from mild to severe. Severity of symptoms can fluctuate and occasionally disappear for periods of time. As bedtime approaches, people who suffer from RLS may experience anxiety, moodiness, depression, difficulty concentrating and excessive daytime sleepiness.

Sleep apnea

Sleep apnea is a condition in which breathing is briefly and repeatedly interrupted during sleep. This occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep the airway open. The body’s response to the lack of oxygen is to wake, usually without the person’s awareness, to allow the muscles in the throat to contract and open the passageway.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, chronic snoring is a strong indicator of sleep apnea and should be evaluated by a health professional. Since people with sleep apnea tend to be sleep deprived, they may suffer from a wide range of other symptoms such as:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Learning difficulties
  • Memory difficulties
  • Falling asleep while at work, on the phone or driving

If left untreated, symptoms of sleep apnea can include high blood pressure, heart attack, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrhythmia, stroke or depression. Overweight, middle-aged men are at a greater risk for developing sleep apnea. This condition may also be caused by enlarged tonsils, posterior displaced jaws or masses in the throat.

Some common signs of sleep apnea are:

  • Loud snoring, with silence then resumption with loud gasps or snorts
  • Awakening frequently with a headache and/or dry mouth
  • Daytime sleepiness and trouble concentrating
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Awakening during the night and choking or gasping for air

Sleep disorders at HCA Houston Healthcare

Sleep disorders refer to a change or disturbance in a patient’s normal sleep pattern. Sleep disorders may affect the amount of sleep and quality of sleep someone receives. Sleep timing may also be of concern in the case of disorders like narcolepsy. Sleep disorders can be linked to both medical and emotional causes.

Learn about Sleep disorders