Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Snoring and Sleep Apnea

I snore.  Apparently, according to my wife, I snore rather loudly.  To hear her talk, when I snore, I am not just sawing logs, but I am a veritable sawmill.  She claims that sometimes my snoring is so bad she thinks that the bed is vibrating.  So, I am having a sleep study done to check for sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea is a condition that can be life threatening if left untreated.  Those who suffer from the condition will stop breathing during sleep.  These stoppages can last several seconds and can occur several times throughout the night.  Consequently, oxygen levels in the blood can fall leading to the potential of having high blood pressure, stroke, or heart attack.

I have several of the signs and risk factors for sleep apnea.  It occurs frequently in middle aged, overweight men.  Thankfully I have been losing weight of late and according to the BMI charts have recently crossed over from obese to overweight but still have some more to go.  I also have hypertension, which sleep apnea can lead to if left untreated.

Some of the other symptoms that I have besides the loud snoring include waking frequently during the night for urination.  I have always attributed a lot of that to having an enlarged prostate, but it could be a part of apnea if that is the diagnosis.  Another sign is that I rarely wake up feeling refreshed and I usually feel sleepy during the day.

I am having my sleep center done at a local hospital.  However, the hospital room is not your typical hospital room.  It is set up similar to a hospital room.  The goal is to create an atmosphere conducive to falling to sleep.  Unfortunately, I usually have more trouble sleeping when not in my own bed.  I am also wondering how I will be feeling with all of the electrodes hooked up to me to measure everything when I sleep.

They say it usually takes a couple of weeks for the results of the study to be analyzed and a determination to be made.  If at that time they discover that I have sleep apnea there are a few different treatments.  Continued weight loss would be a given.  There would be the possibility of being put on a CPAP device that forces air through the nasal passages to prevent the obstruction from occurring during sleep.  Other options include oral devices or possible surgical procedures.
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1 comment:

  1. I've been encouraging my boyfriend to see a doctor for his snoring. Maybe I need it too. We should go in together and get a sleep study. I hope it doesn't cost too much though.



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