Sleep Apnea – What Is It And How Do You Treat It?

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If you snore loud enough to get yourself booted out of bed on a regular basis, you might have sleep apnea. The snoring may be annoying, but the actual condition can be serious if it's not treated. Below is a brief explanation of sleep apnea, and some available treatment options.

Sleep Apnea Defined

Sleep apnea disrupts your regular breathing pattern when you are sleeping. Snoring is one indication, but since you are the one sleeping, you may not even realize you have the condition. It's usually your sleeping partner that notices the problem. Other symptoms include:

Diagnosing Sleep Apnea

Sleep specialists conduct both in-home and in-hospital sleep tests to diagnose apnea. The home test involves wearing a portable monitor overnight. The hospital stay is a bit more extensive, since you are hooked up to several different machines that are monitored throughout the night. If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, it will be one of two forms:

Treatment Options

Treatment for sleep apnea falls in two main categories, CPAP or EPAP devices and oral appliances.