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Unlocking Better Sleep: Understanding and Diagnosing Sleep Apnea

06/28/2024

Sleep apnea is a common but often undiagnosed sleep disorder affecting millions of adults in the United States. An estimated 29.4 million American adults have sleep apnea, yet 80% remain undiagnosed and untreated.

Many people dismiss symptoms like snoring or daytime fatigue, making it challenging for healthcare providers to screen for and diagnose this condition properly. While getting a sleep apnea diagnosis may seem daunting, seeking treatment can significantly improve quality of life. Fortunately, the process has become more comfortable and accessible using options like at-home sleep tests.

SleepTest.com provides an easy-to-use online SleepTest Patient Portal and telemedicine visits that pair you with a provider who can help you find the correct treatment for your lifestyle.

Could You Have Sleep Apnea?

Knowing what signs to look for when it comes to sleep apnea is a good place to start as you work toward better and healthier sleep.  The most common type of sleep apnea is Obstructive Sleep Apnea. This occurs when the throat muscles relax as you sleep, allowing soft tissues to collapse and obstruct the upper portion of your airway. These episodes of obstruction, known as apneas (complete pauses in breathing) and hypopneas (partial reductions in airflow), can last at least ten seconds and often result in significant drops in blood oxygen levels. The decrease in blood oxygen levels alerts your brain, which tells your body to wake up. You likely won't notice these awakenings, but the inability to get deep, restful sleep will create signs such as:

  • Loud snoring
  • Witnessed apneas or gasping/choking during sleep
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Low energy
  • Morning headaches
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory issues
  • Mood changes
  • Frequent nighttime urination
  • Insomnia or restless sleep

Check out the other symptoms of sleep apnea here. If you're uncertain, we encourage you to take our sleep questionnaire.

Sleep Studies Can Be Done in Your Home

If you experience these symptoms, an at-home sleep study may be a convenient first step. SleepTest.com is an excellent option for people who want to get a diagnosis but know a visit to a sleep lab isn’t the correct answer for them. Home sleep tests are:

  • Affordable and covered by many insurance plans
  • Able to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea
  • Accurate for most patients
  • Completed over two nights in your bed
  • Analyzed quickly, with results in about a week.

After diagnosis, a sleep specialist can recommend appropriate treatment options. These may include CPAP therapy, oral appliances, lifestyle changes, or a combination approach. Many patients find significant relief once they begin proper treatment. Sleep apnea can have serious health consequences if left untreated, but the good news is diagnosis and management have become more accessible.

 

Order an In-Home Sleep Test From SleepTest.com

If you suspect you may have sleep apnea, order your sleep test today. Proper treatment can help you get the restful sleep your body needs.

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SleepTest.com is a HIPAA-compliant, independent diagnostic testing facility (IDTF) accredited by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Joint Commission.