Our experienced sleep medicine team is here to answer your questions related to sleep health and to make your health care journey as comfortable as possible. We are here to help you every step of the way - from the initial sleep consultation to any sleep study to every follow-up appointment.

If you have additional questions that are not addressed below, please contact your healthcare provider

Sleep Clinics at UChicago Medicine

Sleep clinics are located on the 4th floor of Gilman Smith, Duchossois Center for Advanced Medicine (DCAM) 4D, Orland Park, River East, and South Loop.

Our sleep lab is located on the 4th floor of Gilman Smith. 

Sleep lab schedulers will call to schedule a sleep study once patient insurance has been verified and approved. The phone number for the Sleep Lab schedulers is 773-834-5400.

Sleep clinics appointments are in-person. However, accommodations can be made for virtual appointments depending on the circumstances.

Sleep study results will be communicated with you via MyChart if your account is activated. If you do not have an active MyChart account then the patient will receive a phone call with their results.

Common Questions about Sleep Problems

The amount of sleep you need depends on your age. In general, children and teens need more sleep than adults. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends that you get the following amounts of sleep on a regular basis:

  • Infants 4 months to 12 months should sleep 12 to 16 hours per 24 hours (including naps).
  • Children 1 to 2 years of age should sleep 11 to 14 hours per 24 hours (including naps).
  • Children 3 to 5 years of age should sleep 10 to 13 hours per 24 hours (including naps).
  • Children 6 to 12 years of age should sleep 9 to 12 hours per 24 hours.
  • Teenagers 13 to 18 years of age should sleep 8 to 10 hours per 24 hours.
  • Adults should sleep 7 or more hours a night on a regular basis to promote optimal health.

Sleeping less than 7 hours per night on a regular basis can lead to adverse health outcomes. Sleeping more than 9 hours per night on a regular basis may be appropriate for young adults, individuals recovering from sleep debt and individuals with illnesses. Individual variability in sleep need is influenced by genetic, behavioral, medical, and environmental factors.

NOTE: These are general recommendations. There is individual variability in sleep need.

The primary cause of feeling tired or sleepy during the day is insufficient sleep. This problem occurs when you fail to get enough sleep each night.

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness is an essential feature of hypersomnias, such as narcolepsy.
  • Other sleep disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea also can cause you to feel tired during the day.
  • Sleepiness can be a symptom of mood problems such as depression.
  • Some medications also can cause you to feel tired.

You should talk to your medical provider to identify the reason why you feel so tired.

Snoring is a respiratory sound generated in the upper airway during sleep. Snoring typically occurs when you inhale, but also may occur when you exhale. The flow of air makes the tissues in the back of your throat vibrate.

The intensity of snoring may vary. It will often disturb the bed partner’s sleep and the sound may even awaken the person who is snoring. Occasional snoring is almost universal. and is most common in adult men. Snoring also is a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea. 

Many factors can interfere in with your sleep. While there are some you cannot control, there are many habits that you can adopt to help improve your sleep. Check out our healthy sleep tips here.

Many people experience a sleepless night occasionally. But if you do have trouble sleeping often or your problems worsen, then it is best to contact your healthcare provider. Identifying any underlying cause can help you get a better night's rest.

Preparing for your Sleep Clinic Visit

  1. As a new patient, you will meet with one of our sleep specialists to either discuss sleep study results already done (for some), or for a complete initial evaluation prior to testing if indicated. Please bring all prior records and PAP equipment to the visit when applicable.
  2. If a sleep study is indicated, your sleep specialist will determine what type of sleep study is best for you based on your symptoms and lifestyle.
  3. If you require any accommodations, such as a language interpreter, please let our staff know during your consultation. We are happy to work with you to meet your needs.
  4. If a sleep study is recommended, our schedulers will call you once pre-approved by the insurance. During the call an appointment date is provided, as well as instructions on how to prepare for your sleep study. Please follow these instructions and arrive on time for your appointment.
  1. You will have an appointment scheduled to pick up your home sleep test device. A member of the sleep team will give you instructions on how to use the home sleep test device. There will also be written instructions with pictures sent home with you for you to look back at. Please ask any questions that you may have at this time.
  2. You should go to sleep at your normal bedtime. When you are ready to sleep, you will attach the sensors to your body as instructed.
  3. When you wake up in the morning, you can remove the sensors. Please put everything back into the case that it came in and bring the device back to the sleep center.
  4. A member of the sleep team will look at all the information collected through your home sleep test. This may take several days. Our staff will contact you to discuss the results of your study and next steps. You will work together to create a plan for your care moving forward.

Before appointment:

Please follow the instructions provided when the appointment was made.

During appointment:

  1. Arrive at Sleep Center. You will be in a private room with a bathroom, shower and TV.
    1. Sleep studies are typically done at night, however, if you work nights, we may schedule you for a day study.
  2. Upon arrival, your sleep technologist will walk you through the equipment and explain the procedure. If you’d like more information on the polysomnography test, you can find that info here.  
  3. You will be asked to use the restroom before your sleep technologist begins applying the equipment. If you use the restroom overnight, your sleep technologist will be able to pause the study and assist you.
  4. Your sleep technologist will apply sensors directly to your skin and connect them to a computer. The wires are long enough that you will be able to move normally in bed. In order to make sure everything is working correctly, your sleep technologist will ask you to do a few simple tasks such as moving your eyes and clenching your teeth.
  5. After your sensors are applied, you are able to read or watch TV until bedtime.
  6. At bedtime, the sleep technologist will turn off the lights and TV and ask you to try to fall asleep. Your room must be quiet and dark.
  7. Upon waking you will have the option to shower. With completion of the study you will be free to leave.

After appointment

The sleep specialists will analyze and interpret the data recorded during your study. You will be scheduled for a follow-up visit with your doctor to discuss the results and any treatment options, if necessary. 

Before appointment:

  1. Consistent sleep and wake times and sufficient sleep on the weeks leading to the test help for accuracy of the results.
  2. Follow your sleep specialists instructions regarding medications
  3. When indicated and provided, wear the “actigraphy watch” the recommended number of days and return the night of the sleep study

During appointment:

  1. Nap studies follow overnight sleep studies. Your sleep technologist will provide instructions during the day, meals are provided.
  2. It usually takes several hours for completion, or most of the day. Plan accordingly.
  3. You will be asked to provide an urine sample for testing of substances that can alter test results (urine drug screen).
  4. Your sleep technologist will keep the sensors connected
  5. During the naps, the sleep technologist will turn off the lights and TV. Your room must be quiet and dark.
  6. Upon completion of the study you will be free to leave.

After appointment

The sleep specialists will analyze and interpret the data recorded during your study. You will be scheduled for a follow-up visit with your doctor to discuss the results and any treatment options, if necessary. 

Healthy Sleep Tips

If you are having trouble sleeping you aren’t alone. Many people have problems falling or staying asleep or both. 

Sleep problems have may causes including your body, mind and other factors. Some possible reasons you have trouble sleeping include:

  • Your body could be overstimulated by your pre-bed workout or from a cup of coffee you had with dinner. You could also have medical conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea or leg movements that impact your sleep.
  • Your mind could be elsewhere because of things such as nerves for an important presentation or excitement for a party.
  • Outside factors, such as your neighbor’s dog barking or a loud thunderstorm.

Thankfully, there are things you can do to sleep better. You can improve some common problem areas, create healthy sleeping environments and establish healthy sleep routines.


Caffeine stimulates the brain and interferes with sleep. Try to use caffeine as needed to help with tiredness in the morning. Regular use during the day can lead to sleep problems at night.

If you are having trouble falling asleep you should not drink more than 200 mg of caffeine a day, about the amount in 2 cups of coffee. Caffeine can take 8 hours to leave your body. Avoid caffeine after lunch time

Common sources of caffeine include

  • Coffee 
  • Chocolate
  • Tea
  • Medicines
  • Soft drinks
  • Energy Drinks


Nicotine stimulates the brain and makes it difficult to fall asleep and can make your sleep worse. Any tobacco product, including cigarettes, chewing tobacco and patches, can contain large quantities of nicotine. Avoid nicotine within 2 hours of bedtime. You should try quitting smoking. Your sleep may be worse in the short-term during nicotine withdrawal, but after your body adjusts, you will fall asleep faster, and wake up less during the night.


Alcohol is deceptive. Its initial disinhibiting effect and sedating effect may help you fall asleep. Alcohol disturbs sleep in the second half of the night. It increases arousals and suppresses slow wave and REM sleep. This leads to non-restorative sleep. Alcohol should not be used as a sleep aid.


Eating too close to bedtime, heavy meals, or foods that cause stomach upset can negatively affect your sleep. Hunger can wake you from sleep. Some people find a light snack at bedtime helps them sleep.


Regular exercise can help you fall asleep faster and more soundly. Try exercising in the afternoon, but not right before bedtime to avoid trouble sleeping. Boredom and too little physical activity during the day can cause trouble falling asleep. Talk to your health care provider before starting an exercise program.

Electronic Devices

The artificial light generated by laptops, tablets and cell phones can interfere with your body’s sleepiness cues. You should not use these devices for 30 minutes before bedtime.

In order to create a good environment for sleeping, make sure you have a comfortable bed in a dark, quiet room.

Is your room too bright

Tip: Try black-out curtains or eye masks.

Is your room too noisy? 

Tip: Try a white noise machine or earplugs.

Is your room too hot or cold?

Tip: 68F is best for sleep, but adjust the temperature to your comfort level.

Here are five tips you can use to build an effective and healthy sleep routine. 

  1. Get up at the same time every day, even on weekends and during vacation. Even if the previous night’s sleep was inadequate. This will reinforce your internal sleep clock and improve sleep.
  2. Avoid taking naps.
  3. Have a regular schedule for meals, medications, chores and activities. This helps your inner clock run smoothly.
  4. Find bedtime routines or rituals that help you relax at night before bed. This might include things like taking a warm bath, a light snack, or a few minutes of reading.
  5. Try to have a regular sleep schedule, but don’t go to bed until you are sleepy.


Sleep problems are a common sign of depression. Some people wake up early and can’t fall back to sleep, while others might sleep more than usual.

Signs of depression: 

  • Lack of interest, or no longer enjoy the things you used to
  • Loss of appetite
  • Withdrawing from other people
  • Feeling like you have no energy and feel tired

Grief and Sadness

These feelings are common if you have recently lost someone close to you. Unwanted or repetitive thoughts can keep you from falling asleep.


Many other medical problems that cause pain can affect your sleep.           

Medical problems that cause pain include:

Other health problems such as obstructive sleep apnea, heart and lung disease can also affect your sleep. Seek help with your primary care provider if you think you have a medical condition that is affecting your sleep.

As you age, you may notice that you have developed problems sleeping. If you think that “having trouble sleeping is just part of aging”, this is false.

Some health changes are normal part of aging, but sleep problems can be a sign that you have a sleep disorder or other health issues. 

Insomnia affects women differently and more commonly than it affects men. Our Center for Women’s Integrated Health has expertise in the unique needs and challenges that women may experience with their sleep health and insomnia.  

If you're struggling with your sleep, these tips may be useful. You can also contact your health care provider for their advice on next steps. 

  1. Set aside time in the evening for relaxation and thinking. Try to avoid taking the troubles of the day to bed. If you have a lot of things on your mind make a written list of them and what you plan to do. Diary-keeping and list-making are excellent stress reducing strategies and promote sleep.
  2. Get in bed only when you are ready to go to sleep and get out of bed in the morning when you wake up. Use the bed only for sleep and sex. Decreasing the amount of awake time in bed will reinforce the sleep schedule and getting into bed, at the appropriate time, will help trigger “sleepiness”.
  3. Napping fulfills nighttime sleep requirements during the day, reducing the amount of sleep required at night and potentially disrupting the sleep/wake schedule. Get to know your own response to napping and nap only if it helps. If napping is necessary, try to limit the nap to 45 minutes at a regular time, preferably between 2 and 4 PM.
  4. A healthy body sleeps better than an unfit one, although it may take several weeks to feel the positive effects of exercise. Exercise in the late afternoon, if possible. Exercise should be avoided just before bedtime.
  5. If you are unable to fall asleep or stay asleep with in 20 minutes, get up. Try a quiet activity and don’t return to bed until you feel tired.
  6. Occasional loud noises disturb sleep, even in those who claim to have adapted to them. You may sound screen the room with a distracting fan or “sound” machine.
  7. The bedroom temperature should be comfortable, as excessively hot or cold rooms disturb sleep.

Request an Appointment

The information you provide will enable us to assist you as efficiently as possible. A representative will contact you within one to two business days to help you schedule an appointment.

You can also make an appointment with our providers by:

Scheduling a virtual video visit to see a provider from the comfort of your home

Requesting an online second opinion from our specialists 

To speak to someone directly, please call 1-888-824-0200. If you have symptoms of an urgent nature, please call your doctor or go to the emergency room immediately.


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Sleep Disorders