If you are tired all the time, it’s likely you don’t get enough sleep. Sleep apnea can be the cause, and snoring is an early warning sign. Find out about sleep apnea, and symptoms like snoring, sleep deprivation, sleep disorders, feeling tired and sluggish, and not getting enough sleep.
Does your heavy snoring keep your partner awake? Or worse yet, do you have to sleep in separate rooms? Does someone threaten to record your snoring because it’s unbelievably noisy?
How you know when you’ve got sleep apnea. It is likely that your partner noticed that you stop breathing often during the night, and called your attention to it. You may already know that you are sleep deprived because you are sluggish during the day. Sometimes you feel like a zombie, just going through the motions. Maybe you can’t drive long distances without falling asleep. Maybe you take secret naps at lunchtime or during the day.
The hidden cause of tiredness can be sleep apnea, a condition in which the airway closes during sleep. The brain’s fight-or-flight response wakes you up, forcing you to breathe. But you aren’t awake up long enough to become conscious of it, because you fall right back to sleep. Sleep apnea can be scary and threaten your overall health.
Special medical clinics are dedicated to treating sleep apnea and other sleep disorders. They invite you to spend the night asleep in the hospital while your sleeping patterns can be observed. Your body is wired to record brain waves and your reflexes and movement. From the sleep study, you can learn about your condition. You may be told that you stop breathing and wake up frequently, often more than once a minute. You are just not getting the type of deep, restful sleep you need to get through your day.
Heavy snoring is the precursor to sleep apnea. Snoring occurs as a vibrating resonance because a person’s airway is partially blocked. Sleep apnea can develop for many reasons. The cause could be enlarged tonsils or obesity or it can just be simple anatomy, the shape of your airway. With apnea, it’s just like sucking a thick milkshake through a paper straw. The straw collapses.
Sleep apnea is one of the more common sleep disorders treated by sleep specialists, but there is a range of other issues. There are sleepwalkers, sleep talkers, and sleep eaters. Some people act out their dreams. Sleep problems can be related to other health problems like stroke, Lou Gehrig’s disease, and muscular dystrophy. Some people get too much sleep, the narcoleptics, and some can’t get any sleep, the insomniacs. Perhaps you work at night and your sleep routine is fighting the circadian rhythm, your internal body clock. But, whatever the reason for sleep apnea, you and many people like you aren’t getting enough quality sleep. They are sleep deprived.
One solution for sleep apnea is the use of a continuous positive air pressure machine CPAP, which forced air into the breathing passages while you sleep. It takes time to get used to the machine, and a respiratory therapist to adjust it for you. The machine goes on, there is a swoosh of air and the patient enjoys uninterrupted sleep for a solid eight hours.
Other treatments often help relieve sleep apnea. There are medications, devices for the mouth, and sometimes surgery to remove the obstructing tissue.
When you sleep well, you are more productive on the job. You can deliver your best work, and life is more fun. The snoring will be less annoying, so your partner will also be well-rested and worry-free.