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Sleep related terms

- B -

  • Basic Sleep Cycle

  • Progression through orderly succession of sleep states and stages. For the healthy adult, the first cycle is begins by going from wakefulness to non-REM sleep. The first REM period follows the first period of non-REM sleep, and the two sleep states continue to alternate throughout the night with an average period of about 90 minutes. A night of normal human sleep usually consists of 4-6 non-REM/REM sleep cycles.

  • Benzodiazepines

  • Developed in the 1950's, this class of compounds tranquilize and sedates.

  • Beta Activity

  • Brain waves with a frequency of greater than 13 Hz (Hertz).

  • Bi-Level

  • Bi-level pressure device used to treat sleep apnea. The "bi" refers to two pressures: a lower pressure for exhalation and a higher pressure for inhalation. Bi-Level machines are more expensive than a standard CPAP, but some patients tolerate it better because they can exhale comfortably against the constant inhalation pressure. (Sometimes called Bi-PAP, but that is a trademark name of one system)

  • Biological Clock

  • Term for the brain process causing us to have 24-hour fluctuations in body temperature, hormone secretion, and other bodily activities. The most important function fosters the daily alternation of sleep and wakefulness. The biological clock is found in a pair of tiny bilateral brain areas called the suprachiasmatic nuclei.

  • Body Position

  • Four positions are identified which a patient may be sleeping; back, left side, right side or abdomen. The time spent sleeping in each position and the number of respiratory events in a particular position are tabulated.

  • Bradycardia

  • Heart rhythm with a rate lower than 60 beats per minute in an adult.

  • Brain Waves

  • The brainís spontaneous electrical activity studied by electroencephalography (EEG).

  • Bruxism

  • Teeth grinding during sleep


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Sleep Related Terms


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