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Kansas Volunteers Catch Z's In Lobby To Raise Sleep Awareness - KOAM TV 7

Kansas Volunteers Catch Z's In Lobby To Raise Sleep Awareness

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    An eye-opening demonstration in Iola Kansas is intended to highlight the importance of a good night's sleep.
    Allen County Regional Hospital is marking National Sleep Awareness Month with a sleep-a-thon on Tuesdays and Thursdays in the lobby of Thrive Allen County. 
    Several community health care, education and business leaders have volunteered to sleep in the lobby, in full view of the public. 
     Hospital CEO Tony Thompson has logged some Z's at the event. Thompson says he was diagnosed with a sleeping disorder and now uses a CPAP at night, which has greatly improved his sleep and quality of life. 
    "This sleep-a-thon is a golden opportunity for us to educate the community we serve about the physical, cognitive and emotional importance of quality sleep," Thompson said.
     "It's reported that 68 percent of people in the United States don't get enough sleep at night and because of that, there are physical behavioral health issues that are associated with lack of sleep."
    Nathan Fawson with the SEK Mental Health Center agrees."Lack of sleep is associated with various other mental health symptoms such as or disorders such as depression,  anxiety," Fawson said. "It very much impacts your mental ability to function and as such it becomes an integrally important part of one's quality of life and well being."
    Fred Larson, director of Allen County Regional Hospital's Sleep Center, is also one of the sleep-a-thon participants.
     Acknowledging that millions of Americans suffer from different types of sleep disorders, Larson observed, "Symptoms range from fatigue, depression, personality changes, irritability, memory loss, decreased concentration, accidents and frequent illnesses, as well as increased risk for hypertension, heart disease and stroke."
    Larson says that while the amount of sleep individuals requires differs, most adults need an average of seven to eight hours of sleep per night.
     "Younger adults may need more and there's no way for your doctor know what your exact number is," Larson said. "However, there is some data that suggests up to one-third of people in the U.S. get less than seven hours of sleep each night."
    The hospital will hold the sleep-a-thons on Tuesday and Thursdays throughout the month of March.
 


 

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