Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects about 28 million Americans, in which you literally stop breathing in your sleep. There are three types of sleep apnea: Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), Central Sleep Apnea (CSA) and Mixed Sleep Apnea (MSA), a combination of the two. Obstructive Sleep Apnea, the most common and severe, results from a blockage in the airway often caused by the collapse of soft tissue at the rear of the throat. Left untreated, sleep apnea can cause serious problems–from fatigue related road accidents to heart attack and stroke.
Of those who snore, 25% actually have Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
What are some Sleep Apnea Symptoms?
Some of the most common sleep apnea symptoms are:
- Choking or gasping during sleep
- Chronic snoring
- Daytime sleepiness
- Morning headache
- Waking with a dry mouth or sore throat
- High blood pressure
- Difficulty concentrating
- Waking up feeling out of breath
How is Sleep Apnea diagnosed?
The only way to positively diagnose Obstructive Sleep Apnea is to have a sleep study, called a Polysomnogram (PSG), performed by a qualified physician.
The American Sleep Apnea Association has created the following survey to help you decide whether or not you are at risk for sleep apnea:
- Are you a loud or regular snorer?
- Have you ever been observed to gasp or stop breathing during sleep?
- Do you feel tired or groggy upon awakening?
- Do you wake up with a headache?
- Are you often tired during the day?
- Do you fall asleep while sitting, reading, watching TV or driving?
- Do you have problems with concentration or memory?
You can also rate your sleepiness using the Epworth Sleepiness Scale.
If you answer yes to any of these questions, you should discuss your sleep apnea symptoms with your doctor, a sleep specialist or San Francisco sleep apnea dentist Dr. Ken Hovden.
For more information, contact the South San Francisco area office of Dr. Kenneth Hovden, DDS in Daly City at 415-494-8293 or send the simple form on this page. We work with patients from all over the area, including Pacifica, so don’t wait any longer!