Diagnosis Sleep Apnea
Defined in many medical journals and documents, sleep apnea is always defined as a sleep disorder (somnipathy). It happens when pauses in breathing during sleep occur more often than normal.
We could say that sleep apnea is a type of snoring with a longer pause in the process of breathing, more precisely, inhaling the air. In most cases, air inflow is obstructed mechanically, partially or fully, by blocking the upper airway, and this is obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA (the most common type of sleep apnea). The other two types of sleep apnea are central sleep apnea, or CSA (which is caused when the brain fails to send signals to the muscles that control breathing), and complex sleep apnea (which is a combination of the previous two types).
If ignored or left untreated, this condition is considered dangerous for human health, as it can cause or worsen the existing medical problems (various types of cardiovascular issues, including high blood pressure, heart attack, heart disease, stroke) and can even have lethal consequences (heart failure).
The medical condition of sleep apnea is diagnosed by doing a sleep study (done by the medical professionals, in a lab, or at home). Before confirming it with the professionals, you can first check for yourself… You can examine and evaluate your sleeping and daily behavior, check for the signs or symptoms of sleep apnea, you can consult with your bedroom partner, or can use a smartphone app to monitor your potential loud snoring.
We listed before common signs and symptoms of sleep apnea (you can read here in more details on how to know if you have sleep apnea), so let’s remind ourselves:
Common signs of sleep apnea:
Reduced or absent breathing, known as apnea events
Frequent loud snoring
Gasping for air during sleep.
Common symptoms of sleep apnea:
- Excessive daytime sleepiness and fatigue
- Decreases in attention, vigilance, concentration, motor skills, and verbal and visuospatial memory Dry mouth or headaches when waking
- Sexual dysfunction or decreased libido
- Wake up often during the night to urinate.
When you know what to pay attention to, it is very easy to confirm you might have sleep apnea. But do keep in mind that only professional medical staff can diagnose sleep apnea.