SLEEP APNOEA is a potentially serious disturbance of sleep where breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. When you fall asleep the muscles at the back of your throat relax causing the airways to narrow or close. Your brain will alert you to the lack of breathing and you may gasp or choke. This is brief and very often you may not be aware. Very often your partner may alert you to the snoring and gasping for breath. Common symptoms include:
- Loud snoring
- Breathing pauses
- Abrupt awakenings accompanied by gasping or choking
- Morning headache
- Sore throat
Sleep apnoea is a serious medical condition if untreated. Some complications include:
- Daytime fatigue – Drowsiness, irritability, falling asleep at the wheel of a car and increased risk of accidents at work.
- High blood pressure or heart conditions – Every time the breathing is interrupted there is not enough oxygen in the lungs. The heart then has to pump harder to get the blood supply to move quicker. It will increase the risk of heart attack, stroke and heartbeat abnormalities.
- Increases risk of type 2 diabetes, may also lead to complications with medications and surgery.
- Sleep deprived partners – It is not uncommon for your partner to move to another room to get good sleep as snoring is generally loud.
Monitoring sleep for sleep apnoea or other sleep disorders can be done either at home or in a sleep lab, where sensitive equipment assesses sleep patterns, oxygen levels, brainwaves and sleep disturbance. This lab also provides a trial of a CPAP machine to assess how much it can help.
Sleep Right is able to supply and support you with all your CPAP requirements.