Dr Neil Stanley Independent Sleep Expert
© Dr. Neil Stanley 2013-2019
Doctors and sleep Most doctors in the UK unfortunately have little, if any, training in sleep medicine and because of this lack of training G.P.s often ignore,  misdiagnose or under-diagnose sleep problems. One of the crucial things in assessing your sleep problem is to take a sleep history from you. However G.P.s generally do not have the time or the skills to take a proper sleep history. Therefore to help them, and more importantly help you get the most appropriate treatment for your problem, below are 15 questions that you should try and answer as accurately as you can before going to your G.P. Note down your answers and take them with you and don’t leave the consulting room until your G.P. has listened to your answers. If they claim not to have the time book a double appointment. You have the right to have your sleep problem taken as seriously as any other illness. 1. Do you regularly have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep or do you wake early in the morning? 2. Do you feel refreshed/well rested in the morning? 3. Do you fall asleep unintentionally or do you have to fight to stay awake during the day? 4. Does your sleep difficulties or daytime sleepiness interfere with your daily activities? 5. Do you snore loudly? 6. Do you hold your breath, have breathing pauses, or stop breathing in your sleep? 7. Do you have restless or "crawling" feelings in your legs at night that go away if you move? 8. Do you have repeated rhythmic leg/arm jerks or twitches during your sleep? 9. Do you have nightmares, or do you scream, walk, punch, or kick in your sleep? 10. Do any of the following things routinely disturb you in your sleep e.g. pain, other physical symptoms, worries, medications, etc? 11. Do you feel sad or anxious during the day? What is your mood like in the morning? 12. Do you work shifts or ‘odd’ hours? 13. How do you sleep when you are away from home or on holiday? 14. Does your work or other activities prevent you from getting enough sleep? 15. Do you wake up during the night more than once needing to go to the bathroom?