What are the Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder in which the breathing stops and starts repeatedly.

This is becoming a widespread phenomenon around the world. To treat this problem, doctors often suggest using CPAP machines. But using such a machine without knowing the basics is not good. You need to be well informed.

In some cases, people suffer a lot without taking proper medication. There is plenty of evidence to show that a patient has died in his sleep as his breathing disorder had not been identified before.

This article is, therefore, to help you to understand the symptoms of sleep apnea. Read on and you can find out whether you or anyone in your family is experiencing this problem. Moreover, you can discover how you can test this problem…

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Apnea

Types of Sleep Apnea

There are three different types of sleep apnea. They are as follows:

  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Central sleep apnea
  • Mixed sleep apnea
1. Obstructive sleep apnea

This is the most frequently observed form of sleep apnea. It occurs at the time when throat’s soft tissue collapses and fails to keep the air flow steadiness at the required amount.

2. Central sleep apnea

This type of apnea is connected with breath management as your brain’s responsiveness has an equal role to play.

3. Mixed sleep apnea

This is the blend form of the above two variants.

Prominent symptoms of sleep apnea 

  • Snoring
  • Memory Problems
  • Restless Sleep
  • Headaches
  • Personality
1. Snoring

This is one of the common symptoms of sleep apnea. Research has found almost all people suffering from it have a serious snoring problem. So when you find someone snoring a lot, consider the fact the problem could be worse than simply snoring.

2. Memory Problem

This is another symptom of sleep apnea. Yes, people can suffer from memory problem for many reasons but you should count sleep apnea as a major probably cause. Different types of brain state and restless sleep are the perfect examples of such memory problems. Eventually, a sleep apnea patient loses concentration too.

3. Restless Sleep

This one is seen quite often too. A patient of sleep apnea cannot get a sound sleep. During the night time, he feels restless. Tossing & turning is the regular sleeping scenario of a sleep apnea patient.

4. Headaches

Another thing is headaches. When a person is not able to sleep well during the night, he would try to sleep during the daytime. If he fails to have a good sleep then too, eventually headaches will start happening. So you can consider it as a consecutive process. Sleep apnea patients can, of course, feel headaches for other reasons too. When a person breathes, his brain receives oxygen in a purely biological process. Irregular breathing stops oxygenation into the brain that can cause headaches. When a person says they get headaches every now and then, the person might be experiencing sleep apnea.

5. Personality

A good sleep is very important for a healthy life. If someone fails to sleep, the consequences can be far-reaching. Research has found that people with sleep apnea suffer changed personalities. Watch out for people you know undergoing similar changes: it could be sleep apnea that’s behind it.

How we can test sleep apnea?

If you go to a doctor and tell him you are suffering the above symptoms and fear you might have sleep apnea, the doctor will check this out. In medical science it is called a polysomnogram. Your doctor can do it in the hospital though it is possible to do it at your home too.

Polysomnogram is a sleep study. It’s a multiple-component test. During the test specific physical activity records become stored electronically in a message transmission process. If this initial test finds that you are having sleep apnea, further more extensive tests will follow.

Sleep study testing is not the type where a patient’s sleep is observed throughout the night with a tool. Basically, electrodes record and transmit electric signals. The brain receives it and starts functioning accordingly. Observing everything in detail, a certified physician can determine your real problem.

There are some other tests often conducted for sleep apnea testing…

  • EEG – For brain activity recording
  • EMG – Muscle activity recording
  • EOG – Eye movement recording
  • EGG – Heart rate recording
  • Snore Microphone – Airflow recording
  • Nasal Sensor – Snoring activity recording

Conclusion

Though there is ample research which has been conducted on sleep apnea, still a lot of things are yet to be revealed.

We don’t know whether there is a mathematical relationship between sleep apnea and obesity. In recent times we have heard some experts suggest that sleep apnea has a genetic cause, though it’s not yet proven and plenty of doubts remain.

There were times when people didn’t take sleeping disorders and similar problems seriously. Things are fortunately changing which is great news for those with sleep apnea.

Leave a Comment:

4 comments
April Cook says July 14, 2016

I didn’t realize that memory problems were a sign of sleep apnea. I’ve noticed a few of these symptoms in my boyfriend, and have been trying to figure out what could cause them. I think I’ll suggest he see a doctor to find out if he can have a polysomnogram to see if it is a sleep disorder. Thanks for sharing this information.

Reply
    Margaret says July 26, 2016

    Thank you 🙂

    Reply
Lillian Schaeffer says October 3, 2016

This is some great information, and I appreciate your point that restless sleep can be a sign of sleep apnea. My husband has problems with snoring, and he’s recently been complaining about having trouble staying asleep. Knowing that it could be sleep apnea, we’ll definitely look into seeing a professional to see what we can do about it. Thanks for the great post!

Reply
    Margaret says November 22, 2016

    I’m happy that you enjoy the article.

    Reply
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