“I sleep through the night, but I never feel rested.”

“My wife won’t let me sleep in the same room with her because of my snoring.”

“I am so tired during the day that it’s affecting my job performance.”

“Sometimes, I struggle to stay awake while driving.”

Sound familiar?  These are all common complaints of persons suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), a condition that affects millions of Americans.  OSA is a major health concern, but the lack of public awareness means that the vast majority of people remain undiagnosed.  Despite stopping breathing and gasping for air up to several hundred times per night, most people are unaware of the problem because it occurs when they are sleeping.  Typically, it is the bedpartner who first notices a problem.

Common signs are:

  • Loud snoring
  • Pauses in breathing
  • Choking or gasping during sleep
  • Waking up in a sweat
  • Getting up to go to the bathroom frequently
  • Feeling unrefreshed in the morning
  • Morning headache, sore or dry throat  

Untreated sleep apnea has been known to contribute to high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease including heart attack and stroke, problems with memory and concentration, weight gain, impotency, morning headache, feelings of depression, and poor diabetic control.

Testing for sleep apnea involves an overnight sleep study, also known as a polysomnogram.  During this time, physical measurements are taken while you sleep to examine the severity of the breathing problem.  At our center, sleep study rooms resemble a five-star hotel and every step is taken to ensure your comfort.

Once sleep apnea has been identified and treated, it can turn your life around.  The sleep you get becomes the restful, restorative sleep that it was meant to be.  People who have been successfully treated for sleep apnea report that they feel more energetic, they are able to concentrate on tasks and better remember things, they don’t have the need to nap or doze during the day, and it becomes easier to work on a weight loss program.

Angela Mueller APNP, FNP-C, Nurse Practitioner