The last thing anyone wants to find out is that they’re sick or have some kind of condition that threatens to make them sick. Sleep apnea is one of those diagnoses that no one looks forward to receiving. The implications of unknowingly suffering from sleep apnea can be life-threatening, making it all the more important to identify the warning signs early and consult with a medical professional for a diagnosis so that you can begin treatment as soon as possible.
How can someone identify if sleep apnea is something they should be concerned about? Some of the most common warning signs center around our relationship to sleep. The four symptoms people should look out for include:
One of the most recognizable symptoms associated with sleep apnea is snoring. Loud snoring is often a sign of an obstruction in the airway, such as excess fat tissue around the neck or a sinched airway from poor sleep posture.
When a person suffers from sleep apnea, they’re routinely woken up in the middle of the night due to lapses in oxygen intake. Once the body has been deprived of oxygen while a person is asleep, the body will jolt awake to reestablish normal breathing.
Being tired all the time isn’t normal. If you’re someone who struggles with chronic fatigue, there’s a good chance you’re not getting enough sleep at night. Fatigue becomes an obvious sign of sleep apnea when you go to sleep and wake up for the day at reasonable times.
Staying focused at work or in school can become nearly impossible for people who are short on sleep. According to the Sleep Foundation, “After 20 hours of being awake, drowsy drivers are impaired on a level equatable to a 0.08% blood alcohol content, which is the current legal limit in most states.”
If you’re having trouble with simple tasks such as getting the right words out when speaking or recalling details, it could be a warning sign of a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea.
If you’re a regular snorer, have trouble staying asleep, experience daytime fatigue, and have trouble focusing, it may result from sleep apnea. Dr. Wallace can help manage your path to better sleep. Schedule a consultation with our office by calling (843) 410-0345.