CPAP Therapy: Two Signs It’s Time to Talk to a Specialist
Summary: Snoring, daytime sleepiness, and waking up in the night may be nothing, or they may be signs of obstructive sleep apnea, a condition that can be very serious. How can you tell the difference, and how do you know when it might be time to discuss CPAP therapy with a doctor? Here two signs that you should watch for.
Sleep apnea affects more than 18 million American adults to varying degrees. It can be a very big deal. For some, sleep apnea disrupts breathing during sleep. Simply put, people with the disorder may find it difficult to breathe while they sleep. They wake to breathe and this can affect everything. It may not always be anything serious, or it may be something that a few small lifestyle changes can fix. How can you tell the difference if you are asleep? Here are two important signs that should be concerning you and let you know that it is time to talk to a specialist.
The first sign of concern is snoring. Some people have a soft gentle snore, and others can have a loud, snorting, gasping snore that leaves them sleeping alone most nights. If your spouse begins sleeping in another room, that may be a sign that the snoring is something more than ordinary. Not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, in fact, most people who snore don’t, but almost everyone with sleep apnea snores. It’s the quality of snoring that needs attention. If it’s too loud and your spouse is concerned about you, then talk to a specialist.
Excessive tiredness and waking in the night is the second sign. People who snore do so because they have obstructed airways and the snoring means that they have to work a bit harder to push oxygen through and keep breathing. Sometimes, the sleeper wakes up for a few seconds to kick start their breathing. They may be aware of waking, but sometimes they are not. They wake, gasp for air, and go back to sleep, many times at night. The feeling of not being able to breathe may cause momentary panic or nightmares. The sleeper wakes in the morning feeling as if they have not slept at all.
Judge the quality of your exhaustion. If you look forward to a nice afternoon nap that leaves you feeling rested and refreshed, that is probably not an issue. But if you are falling asleep at work, while driving, or while having a conversation, then that definitely may be a sign that you are waking in the night too often, even if you don’t realize you are waking up.
If your snoring is of concern to others, if you wake in the night, and if you are constantly tired during the daytime, these are signs that you should talk to a sleep therapist about whether or not you have sleep apnea that is affecting the quality of your life and your overall health. You may need CPAP therapy and treatment. In this therapy, discuss with your doctor or specialist at CPAP Solutions Inc. about the concerns you are having and how you can sleep better, and breathe better, at night. The doctor will likely recommend some diet and lifestyle changes, but also ask you to try sleeping with a breathing mask that will keep your airways open at night. Try wearing the mask for a month and see what a difference it makes.