What to Expect Before

Before a sleep study, your doctor may ask you about your sleep habits and whether you feel well rested and alert during the day.

You may be asked to keep a sleep diary or sleep log. You will record information such as when you went to bed, when you woke up, how many times you woke up during the night, and more. You can find an example of a sleep diary in "Your Guide to Healthy Sleep." What To Bring With You

Depending on what type of sleep study you're having, you may need to bring:


  •  Notes from your sleep diary or sleep log. These may be helpful to your doctor.    
  •  Pajamas and a toothbrush for overnight sleep studies.    
  •  A comfortable pillow.    
  •  A book or something to do between testing periods if you're having a multiple sleep latency test or a maintenance of wakefulness test (MWT).  

How To Prepare

You may need to stop or limit the use of tobacco, caffeine, and stimulants before having a sleep study. Your doctor may ask you about alcohol, medicines, or other substances that you take and about allergies that you have.

You may routinely take medicine that affects your sleep patterns. If so, a sleep specialist will help you plan how to take it during and possibly before the test.

You should try to sleep well the night before you have an MWT, because you will have to try to stay awake during this test. If you're being tested as a requirement for a transportation- or safety-related job, you may be asked to take a drug-screening test.