There are a lot of reasons we’ve heard to put off doing a sleep study:
- “I don’t know where to go to get tested.”
- “The wait times for sleep studies are too long.”
- “Isn’t testing expensive?”
- “I’m just really busy.”
- “I don’t know if my insurance covers it?”
- “I don’t want to know!”
- “I’m worried about losing my CDL.”
- “I just don’t even know where to start.”
It’s understandable that any medical diagnosis can be a frightening one--no one wants to feel out of control of their own health and wellness. But obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is not curable and requires regular treatment in order to stave off potentially deadly complications in the long run.
Here are four reasons you should get tested for sleep apnea TODAY:
1. Avoid Long-Term Health Complications
Sleep apnea is one of the number one culprits of long-term health problems. While most who suffer from sleep apnea may say that the worst side effect is excessive daytime fatigue or chronic sleepiness, the reality is much, much worse.
Along with regular daytime sleepiness, untreated sleep apnea compromises several of your internal organs and biological systems.
You could also experience increased risk of:
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Heart Disease
- Weight Gain
- Hypertension, or High Blood Pressure
- Post-Surgery Complications
- Acid Reflux
On top of this already overwhelming list, you can also be put at a higher risk of developing certain cancers as a result of untreated OSA. While the idea of an OSA diagnosis or sleep study may be worrying, it’s not nearly as worrisome and these potential long term and life threatening complications.
2. Lack of Sleep Can Impact How Your Body Functions
Though untreated OSA can result in several problematic conditions, you will likely also experience excessive daytime sleepiness or chronic fatigue. Both of these problems are the direct result of compromised sleep. But, aside from brain fog or other similar experiences, you can also compromise your immune system, leaving you susceptible to illness or infections.
Your immune system runs like a well oiled machine, but if you take away the resources it needs to work, then you will start to see problematic side effects. When you sleep, your body produces cytokines (e.g. infection-fighting powerhouses that fend off foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses).
When you sleep, your body is able to generate more energy to produce the materials needed to defend against sickness and fight off potential illness. Chronic sleep deprivation will not only make you more susceptible to illness, but it will also result in longer recovery times and even put you at increased risk of more serious conditions like diabetes and heart disease.
3. Increase Your Safety Behind the Wheel
The results of a recent study found that patients with sleep apnea were almost 2.5X more likely to be the driver in a car accident when compared with a control group of drivers in the normal population. Luckily sleep apnea is a very manageable disorder when paired with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) or Automatic positive airway pressure (AutoPAP) treatment.
When untreated you could be the victim decreased focus on the road, slowed reaction times, and poor decision making skills. All three of these very real risks threaten you on the road when you choose to drive drowsy. Sleepiness impacts your necessary focus on the road in front of you. You will be unable to properly gauge the behaviors of the cars in front of and behind you, less aware of your surroundings (i.e. pedestrians), and more easily distracted by your radio or even your own thoughts.
4. Because You Deserve to Get Great Sleep Every Night
Above and beyond all of these serious concerns, you should be experiencing the incredible quality of life that comes with regular, restorative sleep. No matter your situation, career, lifestyle, location, age, or gender, you deserve to be getting quality sleep so you can make the most out of each day. No one needs to live with their sleep apnea because diagnoses are simple and treatment is immediately effective when used properly.
Home Sleep Tests to Improve Your Health
All the risks of untreated sleep apnea are curable. If you believe that you may be at risk for sleep apnea, you need to undergo a sleep study to get the answers you need.
Home sleep tests are a great option for those who believe they suffer from this sleep disorder because they allow you to get quick, effective answers from the comfort of home without the hefty in-lab sleep study price tag. Sleep apnea is a very treatable condition but it does require a prescription.
After receiving your official diagnosis you can speak with our patient care representatives to discuss which treatment option may be right for you. As soon as treatment begins, many patients feel more rested, alert, and happier because they are getting the restorative, uninterrupted sleep we all need.