Three full days will be devoted to the subject of sleep – or more specifically, the lack thereof – when the first Sleep Expo Middle East comes to Dubai this spring.
Evidence is mounting that not only are people having more issues sleeping, they are increasingly suffering for it, creating an increasing awareness of the concept of “sleep hygiene.” In the US, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have already declared sleep deprivation a public health crisis. Last year, a survey of residents in the UAE found 90 percent of respondents said they were not getting the ideal eight hours of sleep a night. Almost half slept for only seven hours per night.
A company called Media Fusion has spotted an opportunity and will hold the first Sleep Expo Middle East on April 11-13 at Dubai Festival City Arena.
The plan is to bring together sleep experts and innovators to discuss and showcase the latest advances in “sleep technology.”
“Sleep-related problems not only put one’s personal health at risk but at the same time bring about real consequences to society as a whole,” said Media Fusion’s director, Taher Patrawala.
The event will feature product displays and live demonstrations, as well provide an opportunity for companies to find business opportunities.
There will be a Sleep Care Zone, offering consultation, yoga nidra classes, foot massages and a “best bed” competition.
There will also be a free-to-attend two-day conference on April 12-13 featuring local and international experts speaking on the subject of sleep.
One of the scheduled speakers, Dr Mayank Vats, a pulmonologist, intensivist and sleep physician at Rashid Hospital in Dubai, will be one of the key speakers at the event, which he said was “trailblazing” in terms of the region’s sleep movement.
“Fast-paced modern lifestyles, stress, computer and mobile technology — these are just some of the leading culprits of sleep-related issues, which, unfortunately, are common in a highly urbanized region like the Middle East,” he says. “A big number of the residents are having sleep-related disorders and unfortunately most patients are not aware or not diagnosed, and hence not getting optimized treatment.”
People who have snoring, sleep apnoea, shift-work related sleep disorders and other forms of sleep deprivation may have minor issues in the short term, but left undiagnosed and treated, they can lead to life-threatening health conditions, says Dr Vats. Those include risks of hypertension, heart attack and stroke, weight gain and obsesity and diabetes.
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