UMC Utrecht launches virtual sleep platform

As adults, we sleep on average about a third of our lives. Good sleep is important to health, but knowledge about it is still limited. With the launch of its new virtual sleep platform, UMC Utrecht wants to broaden and deepen this knowledge.

Little by little, attention has been paid to this in the healthcare sector in recent years. In Limburg, for example, Sevagram and Zuyderland recently developed a digital sleep protocol for older adults who sleep restlessly. It turns out that with a caring technique, such as a sleeping pad, they can be helped regularly and thus become calmer during the day. Sleep is also important for young babies and even very young babies sleep longer than they are awake. At UMC Utrecht, a new e-learning is being developed in 2021 on the importance of sleep for chronically ill children.

Health is visible 24 hours

Sleep still isn’t important, especially when it comes to the medical power of rest during children’s physical recovery. There is also more interest in serious sleep disorders, for example due to apnea, and more and more smart healthcare technologies, such as wearable devices, are available to diagnose this problem.

However, according to Groene Dudenk, pediatrician and sleep researcher, healthy sleep still doesn’t get the attention it deserves. On the website From UMC Utrecht says: “Sleep plays an important role in health and disease. Health is a 24-hour phenomenon. To underscore the importance of sleep, we strive with the Sleep Discovery Lab sleep platform to make the topic of sleep an indispensable part of research, care and education in the healthcare sector.”

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Sleep Detection Lab with Sleep Platform

The sleep detection lab was kicked off on March 17th at the Wilhelmina Children’s Hospital (WKZ) at UMC Utrecht. WKZ, in collaboration with the Knowledge Center for Rehabilitation Medicine Utrecht (KCRU) and the Princess Máxima Centre, is already conducting research on the role of sleep in early development, during illness and in children’s rehabilitation.

The Virtual Sleep Platform was launched on World Sleep Day. This World Sleep Day is held annually on the Friday before the onset of spring. In 2023, this sleeping day will be Friday, March 17th. On this day, sleep and matters related to sleep, such as health and alertness, are fundamental. This day is popular in Belgium and is mainly seen as a day of rest. In the Netherlands, special attention is drawn on this day to the consequences of a bad night’s sleep and the disorders that can cause a bad night’s sleep. The Sleep Discovery Lab is openly responding to this and hopes to stimulate innovative, interdisciplinary research into sleep.

Megan Vasquez

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