Nearly 3 million Australians have Obstructive Sleep Apnoea, yet 80% remain undiagnosed. If you’re having trouble sleeping then it’s wise to get tested so you can get back to having a restful night’s sleep as soon as possible.
In the long-term, poor quality sleep can lead to serious health complications, including weight gain, increased blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. In Australia it’s estimated around 15% of adults who fail to get sufficient shut eye are living with a chronic sleep disorder known as ‘sleep apnoea’. Sleep apnoea occurs when the walls of the throat come together during sleep and block off the upper airway. This leads to a halt in breathing (usually for a few seconds, although in severe cases it can last longer), until the brain recognises its lack of oxygen and signals to wake the person up.
Breathing then returns to normal as oxygen levels regulate. Each pause in breathing is called an ‘apnoea’. It’s not uncommon for someone with sleep apnoea to snore loudly as the body gasps for oxygen. Many people living with sleep apnoea are often unaware of their condition.
Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Fast Facts:
50% of people with high blood pressure have OSA
50+% of people with type 2 diabetes have sleep apnoea
77% of people that are obese have OSA
70% of people who have had a stroke have sleep apnoea
A person with sleep apnoea is 7 times more likely to have a car accident
Health Check Procedure
Sleep apnoea can be diagnosed with an overnight at-home sleep test called a ‘polysomnogram’ or ‘sleep study’. You can hire the appropriate equipment to perform the test at home; the machine will monitor your blood oxygen levels, brain activity, heart rate, and breathing.
The results are uploaded from the testing device and emailed to a sleep specialist (a doctor) who makes the diagnosis. In some cases, the patient may be required to visit a sleep specialist for more tests. Your Blooms The Chemist Pharmacist can also give you advice on managing the condition and making improvements to your sleep quality.