Chances are you probably know someone who is affected by sleep apnea. It?s an extremely common condition that affects your breathing during sleep. Sleep apnea causes you to have shallow breathing or pauses while breathing, which can last a couple of seconds or even a few minutes. In other words, sleep apnea should not go ignored and should be treated as soon as possible. Still not convinced? Check out some of these reasons you should head to your doctor as soon as possible if you think you may suffer from sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is more common than you think
If you have trouble sleeping and your significant other says you often snore, you might suffer from sleep apnea (and you wouldn?t be alone!) In fact, 6.62% of Americans suffer from sleep apnea; in other words, one in every 15 Americans. So if you have chronic snoring and can?t seem to figure out why, it?s best to head to your doctor to get tested for sleep apnea.
It can disrupt your sleep many times throughout the night
Sleep apnea doesn?t occur just a few times throughout the night. Instead, it consistently affects your sleep. Shallow breathing and/or pauses in breathing caused by sleep apnea can actually occur up to 30 times per hour, meaning you?re consistently at risk of complications due to sleep apnea and your snoring is probably always keeping your significant other awake.
It?s an extremely dangerous condition to go untreated
Although incredibly common, sleep apnea can be very dangerous if left untreated. Not only can sleep apnea cause problems while you?re sleeping (since it causes pauses in your breathing), it also can lead to a variety of other health problems, including: high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, depression, headaches, and heart attacks. It?s not something to mess with. In fact, according to the National Commission on Sleep Disorders Research, every year there are about 38,000 deaths that are connected to sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is treatable so if you suspect you have sleep apnea, we recommend taking a trip to your doctor as soon as possible ? it could save your life!
Treatment is easily accessible
The good news about sleep apnea is that treatment is easily accessible. The most common therapy for sleep apnea is called Continuous Positive Airway Pressure, or CPAP. This therapy involves wearing a mask, which is connected to a pump that continuously pumps a small amount of air into the nasal passages to ensure they stay open. CPAP supplies are easily accessible and can end up saving your life. You can purchase CPAP supplies at medical supply stores that sell medical equipment and emergency medical supplies. Since CPAP supplies are literal life-savers, they aren?t inexpensive, so it may be best to go through your insurance company after seeing your doctor.
Does you or someone you kn ow suffer from sleep apnea? What do you use to treat it? Let us know in the comments below!