December 2013

Stop, Breathe, Fall Asleep, Repeat–Obstructive Sleep Apnea Explained!

What is misunderstood by patients is they think Sleep Apnea is just snoring; or the gasping for air is just gasping for air. In fact not many patients associate snoring or gasping for air as affecting the quality of their sleep. When you stop  breathing at night, your body wakes you up, maybe ever so slightly in order to breathe again. You then continue to breathe until you go to sleep again. This cycle is then repeated through the night which is why you are tired during the day and have headaches in the morning.

On a Sleep Study, we consider this to be an "arousal", with the frequency in breath pauses over the span of one night's sleep as your AHI or Apnoea Hypopnoea Index. 0-5 is considered to be normal when speaking about Obstructive Sleep Apnea, anything higher is not normal. You are categorised into either Mild (5-15 pauses per hour), Moderate (15-30 pauses per hour) or Severe (anything greater than 30 pauses per hour). If you do snore and are tired during the day, this may be the reason why. Testing is now fast and efficient,and best of all you are able to be tested in your own home, so why not contact us to organise a Sleep Study today 9252 6144.

Fatigue – Don’t take it to work with you!

Fatigue is a Workplace Health and Safety risk, particularly if you drive heavy vehicles or operate machinery. Even if you make important business decisions, studies have shown that fatigue can impair your judgement as much as having a Blood Alcohol Concentration of 0.05! Sleepiness and fatigue are two different conditions. Sleepiness comes from having a poor night's sleep the night before; it is usally a symptom of fatigue. Fatigue usually relates to poor reaction time, small attention span and trouble in focusing. It is therefore more than just feeling sleepy. It is everyone's responsibility to ensure that fatigue stays out of the workplace. Many companies have policies in place to ensure employees are able to come to work without feeling fatigued.This includes roster design, ability to take a break when needed, and in some cases, enabling the employee's access to a "power nap".

If there is an underlying sleep disorder, such as Obstructive Sleep Apnea, employees will benefit from accurate diagnosis and effective therapy. Contact Sleep Centres on 9252 6144 to find out more.