Apnea Title
Apnea HeaderApnea CureStop Smoking
submit button header
Wake up happy! Discover the proven sleep apnea treatments that guarantee a healthy and restful sleep!

Sign up here for your FREE report:
Your Name:
Email Address:

Sleep apnea sufferers more prone to accidents

Research studies suggest that apnea patients are more likely to be involved in car accidents, due to the inherent feeling of sleepiness in apneics.

People with severe sleep apnea -- brief interruptions in breathing during sleep -- are three times as likely as others to be involved in a car crash, a Virginia study shows. But the accident rate for drivers with mild apnea is no higher than for the rest of the population.

Researchers compared the accident rates for 46 patients with mild, moderate or severe obstructive sleep apnea with the rate for all licensed drivers in Virginia for five years, 2001 through 2005.

The accident rate increased with the degree of sleep apnea. For drivers with moderate sleep apnea, it was 50 percent higher than for the average driver; for those with severe apnea, it nearly tripled.

The difference in accident rates between the apnea group and the 3.7 million other licensed drivers in Virginia was statistically significant only for those with severe apnea, researchers said.

Studies show that up to 50 percent of men snore, with half that number considered problem snorers--reaching the level where they disturb their sleep or their partner. Weight and age are also factors in snoring. The more overweight and the older, the more likely snoring is.

In addition to severe snoring, unexplained sleepiness or disturbed sleep may be symptoms of sleep apnea and may require evaluation. Under ordinary circumstances, it is not normal for a person to be sleepy during the day.

The apnea groups did not differ significantly from the rest of the licensed drivers in age, sex ratio or number of miles driven per year. The findings, researchers concluded, suggest that it is important to identify patients with severe sleep apnea so that special efforts to reduce automobile accidents can be directed at those patients.

There are devices that can be used at home to measure oxygen in your blood while you sleep and thus help rule out apnea. But technically the diagnosis of apnea requires testing in a special sleep clinic to see if you actually stop breathing and for how long. If you are diagnosed with severe apnea and self-help steps don't work, there's no easy answer.

A simple tip for people suffering from apnea is if you are not able to fall asleep after 20 minutes, get up and do something rather than lying there awake. Return only when you are sleepy. Do not bring work to bed.

Next: Sleep apnea treatable