What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. The pauses in breathing can last for 10 seconds or longer, and they may occur 30 times or more an hour. These episodes of interrupted breathing may awaken you briefly; they can also keep you from getting deep sleep, leaving you feeling tired when you wake up. It's estimated that about 12 million Americans have sleep apnea, but the majority of them don't know they have it because they experience no symptoms during the day.
Is sleep apnea dangerous?
Sleep apnea is a potentially life-threatening disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. Left untreated, it can lead to high blood pressure, an increased risk of stroke, heart disease, heart failure, mood disorders, and diabetes. The condition is most often seen in overweight people or those who are older. It's also common among people with chronic nasal congestion or allergies. If you think you may have this condition, please consult with one of our doctors to see if you need any testing or treatment.