Globe and Mail writer Erin Anderssen takes part in a sleep disorder test at the Royal Ottawa Hospital Sleep Lab November 7, 2016 in Ottawa.

On a single bed in a spartan, narrow room at the sleep clinic of the Royal Ottawa Hospital, a technician is carefully gluing the last set of electrodes to my face. It is around 10 p.m. on a Monday in November, and I am already in pyjamas, as per instructions, prepared to spend the night. Five other patients are being wired up in their own rooms. The entire process takes about an hour, and Mike Godbout, a soft-spoken psychology grad who has been watching people sleep at the clinic since 2003, makes sure I stay seated – a nervous patient once fainted on him.