Sleep important, say experts

Sleep is an essential function that allows our body and mind to recharge. Sleep disorders, such as snoring (also known as sleep apnea), can cause fatigue and increase chances of serious health risks like diabetes, obesity and more.

Sleep--we all need it and sometimes we cannot get the proper sleep that our bodies need to function. The Sleep Center at Pioneers Medical Center (PMC) in Meeker seeks to improve their patient’s sleep with advancing sleep care and enhancing sleep health with the goal of improving their patients’ lives.

The PMC Sleep Center is an American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) accredited facility. The Center diagnoses and treats a wide range of sleep disorders performing in-lab studies, as well as home sleep studies for a wide range of sleep disorders.  

Most sleep disorders often go undiagnosed, which can lead to serious health issues. In fact, the AASM associates persistent lack of sleep with an increased risk of mortality. Chronic lack of sleep also includes serious health risks such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, and cancer.

According to the AASM, “Sleep is vital for health and well-being in children, adolescents, and adults. Healthy sleep is important for cognitive functioning, mood, mental health, and cardiovascular, cerebrovascular, and metabolic health. Adequate quantity and quality of sleep also play a role in reducing the risk of accidents and injuries caused by sleepiness and fatigue, including workplace accidents and motor vehicle crashes.”

PMC Sleep Center includes registered sleep technologists that bring top-rated sleep study services to the Western Slope. PMC’s Technical Sleep Director, Felix Monteagudo, has over 25 years of sleep experience which includes conducting sleep research with major pharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer, Takeda, GlaxoSmithKlein and Sepracor. His credentials include: Registered Sleep Technician (RST), Certified Clinical Sleep Health (CCSH), Registered Polysomnographer (RPSGT) and a Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT).

“We need to understand that sleep is an essential function that allows our body and mind to recharge. Sleep disorders that are left untreated can dramatically affect your health,” said Felix Monteagudo.

The PMC Sleep team also includes Andrea Hazelton, FNP-C, a designated provider exclusive to sleep patients.

“The improvement that most people experience is life changing. I often hear patients say that they cannot believe how much energy they have, or they wake up ready for the day and they’re sleeping through the night for the first time in a long time,” said Hazelton.

Hazelton aids in the consulting and treatment of sleep patients, ensuring they understand their sleep study results and the appropriate ways to use their equipment.  

“Many people are worried about wearing a mask or being attached to tubing while they sleep. It can take a little time to adjust to this, but most people say they can’t imagine sleeping without it and as one patient said, “I can’t wait to go to bed at night!”  Hazelton said.

In addition to Felix Monteagudo and Hazelton, the Center’s team includes Elizabeth Monteagudo, PMC’s Sleep Center Administrative Assistance and a Clinical Certified Medical Assistant (CCMA), who has worked extensively in sleep medicine alongside Felix Monteagudo for over 25 years.  

“PMC Sleep Center has first class professional staff with a desire to help people improve their sleep,” says sleep patient J.Kunkel, “I am extremely grateful that PMC has such an excellent Sleep Center, they are wonderful and have improved my quality of life. I was not sleeping well, I was fatigued, and had no energy after a full night of 7 hours of sleep. Immediately, after having the test completed and placed on the correct PAP pressures and nocturnal oxygen I needed, my energy levels have increased and I am now getting the proper rest my body needs. I encourage anyone who snores, needs nocturnal oxygen or has sleep disturbances to get a sleep study test done there,” Kunkel said.

PMC Sleep Center treats individuals aged 13 and older; however,they do not offer pediatric treatment for children with sleep disorders. To learn more or schedule a consultation with Andrea Hazelton FNP-C, please call the Meeker Family Health Center (970) 878-4014.