Sleep apnea is a serious sleeping disorder that causes a number of potential health issues resulting from the lack of deep sleep and loss of oxygen to the brain. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), the most common type of sleep apnea, occurs when the tongue falls backward while sleeping and blocks the upper airway. The body senses this lack of oxygen, injects adrenaline into the system, and wakes the person with a jolt.
Some of the health risks associated with sleep apnea include:
- Heart attack/heart disease
- Irregular heart beat
- High blood pressure
- Headaches or migraines
- Impaired memory
- Increased motor vehicle and work-related accidents
Sleep apnea affects hundreds of thousands of people every year. Snoring is the most common sign of sleep apnea. Many people ignore the fact that they snore at night, wake up gasping for air, or feel tired during the day due to a poor night’s sleep. For those that sleep alone and don’t know if they snore, there are other symptoms that appear during waking hours.
Some other indications of sleep apnea include:
- Feeling tired after a night’s rest
- Difficulty sleeping
- Headaches upon waking
- Inability to concentrate
- Extreme drowsiness during the day
- Memory loss
Undiagnosed and untreated sleep apnea can be dangerous for your health, as well as putting you at risk for a number of health issues.