It is estimated that 15% of Singapore’s population suffers from Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). This is supported by the increase of patients seeking treatment at sleep clinics and hospitals in recent years amid a rise in obesity levels and awareness of the condition.
So what exactly is sleep apnea and why is it dangerous?
Sleep apnea is a potentially serious disorder where breathing stops and restarts many times during sleep. Usually, breathing will stop for at least 10 seconds, more than 5 times per hour during the night. Though OSA may not seem to be a serious problem on the surface, the condition actually brings a host of negative consequences including a higher chance of heart and circulation problems such as heart attacks, high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, strokes and higher risk of obesity and lower quality of sleep. Studies have shown that low quality of sleep results in drowsy driving and it is as risky as drunk driving. This increases the risk of traffic accidents resulting in deaths. The symptoms of sleep apnea for adults include:
- Snoring with pauses in breathing
- Restless sleep
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Morning headaches
- Poor judgment and memory loss
- Irritability and impaired mental or emotional functioning
- Frequent visits to the bathroom at night
What are the treatment options?
The most effective way to diagnose sleep apnea is through a sleep study. Sleep studies track the patient’s brain, heart and eye activity as well as the breathing and blood oxygen level patterns. From the study, doctors can advise a number of treatments depending on the severity of the patient’s condition. These include non-invasive solutions such as Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) that delivers slightly pressurized air to keep the throat open during the night, oral appliances or dental splints. In serious cases, doctors may also recommend surgery to remove obstructions in the airway.
If you display one or more of the above symptoms or suspect that you or your loved ones suffer from sleep apnea, you can now arrange for a sleep study in the comfort of your home. Call our friendly medical concierge at +65 6679 7867 or email us at email@example.com.
A poor night’s sleep is not something that you have to put up with.