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Sleep Lab Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What should I expect when I arrive?

A. You will check in at the Admitting windows near the Emergency Room. Once that is completed, the admitting personnel will call the Sleep Lab to let them know you are ready for your test. The Sleep Lab technologist will come up to Admitting and escort you down to your bedroom in the Sleep Lab. They will introduce themselves, show you around your bedroom and bathroom, show you how to call for assistance during the night, and allow you to change into your pajamas for the night. Once you are ready for bed, your technologist will come back to your bedroom, assist you in completing paperwork, and answer any questions you might have about your test. Then, your technologist will begin applying electrodes and sticky patches to the surface of your skin. We do not use any invasive procedures during a sleep study. This means no needles. Once the attachment of the electrodes is complete, your technologist will ask you if you want to go to bed or if you’d rather watch TV in your room or read for a while.


Q. Can I sleep in any position during the Sleep Study?

A. Yes, you are encouraged to sleep in your normal sleeping positions. However, because some people have worse sleep apnea when they sleep on their backs, your technologist may ask you to attempt to sleep in that position at some point during the night.

Q. Can I use the bathroom during the Sleep Study?

A. Yes, you may use the bathroom as many times as needed throughout the night. Your technologist will show you how to summon them in order to get up to go to the bathroom. It is very simple to do so, as the technologist only needs to unhook one computer cable and then you take all your wires with you to the bathroom.

Q. Can I take my normal medications?

A. The short answer is yes. Most home medications can and should be taken as you typically would at home. Some people like to take these prior to coming to the Sleep Lab for their test. Others like to take their medication just prior to going to bed. If you take any medications during your sleep time, you should also bring those with you to the Sleep Lab. You will be asked to sign a form indicating you have brought these medications from home and you will be taking them without the assistance of medical personnel. If you take any medications which include stimulants, your Sleep Physician (Dr. Kim or Dr. Sharlin) will need to indicate to Sleep Lab staff if you should take these the day or night of your test. Some people have medication they take “as needed” during the night at home. These can include things like medication to alleviate headache, reflux, heartburn, and pain. Please be sure to bring these with you to your test.

Q. Should I eat dinner before my Sleep Study?

A. Yes, you should eat dinner as normal before coming to the Sleep Lab for your test. Many people think about surgery instructions before they come to the hospital for any test. We do not ask you to restrict anything such as food, medication, or liquids prior to a Sleep Study. We do suggest that you avoid an overly large dinner (no third trips to the buffet line before your Sleep Study, for example), avoid spicy foods, do not drink alcohol before your Sleep Study, and stop eating or drinking anything with caffeine around noon the day of your testing. If you are having your test during the day due to shift work, you are also encouraged to follow your normal eating patterns.

Q. Can I smoke during my test?

A. Ozarks Community Hospital is a non-smoking facility. We do not allow smoking on our premises. Additionally, many of the tests performed in the Sleep Lab do not allow cigarette smoking while they are being collected. This means that if you smoke and you cannot tolerate the 5-12 hours you will be here for testing, you should bring nicotine replacement items with you for your test. If you do so, please speak to your technologist once you arrive. They can tell you the appropriate times that you will be allowed to use these patches or nicotine gum.

Q. How long does an overnight Sleep Study last?

A. Generally, we try to turn “Lights Off” by 10 p.m. We typically awaken patients and have them ready to leave the next morning by 6:30 a.m. If your testing is being done during the day due to shift work reasons, we adjust these times accordingly. If you are having a test other than an overnight (or daytime) Sleep Study, these tests (nap studies, MWT) usually take between 10-12 hours.


Q. What if my test indicates a sleeping problem?

A. Following the completion of your test, you will be contacted by Sleep Lab staff or scheduled for an appointment to see Dr. Kim. Your results will be discussed at that time.


Q. Is there anything I should bring to my study to make my stay more comfortable for me?

A. Many people like to bring a pillow from home. We do provide pillows of course, but sometimes people like their own. We usually tell people to pack as though they were spending the night in a hotel. Bring your pajamas, toiletries, personal care items, medication if needed, and clothes for the next day. Many people get ready at the Sleep Lab, using our showering facilities, and go straight to work or school from here.

Q. Does it matter if I take a nap the day before or the day of the study?

A. Please do not nap on the day of your test. Once you get up for the day, remain awake until it is time for your test to start.

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