Important facts about sleep apnea and how it could be affecting you.
According to Daniel Mansfield, MPH, National Center for Health Research, “Between 50-70 million Americans have a sleeping disorder that could affect their driving skills.”
Obstructed Sleep Apnea (OSA) is one of the leading disorders causing drowsy driving and most OSA patients go undiagnosed or untreated. Some of the risks of OSA in drivers are:
- Slowed reaction time
- Increased distractibility
- Impaired judgment
- Increased risk of lapses of attention
- And above all, high risk of falling asleep
However dangerous it may seem, OSA screening requirements for professional truck drivers have recently been removed. This means less treatment of OSA among drivers and, therefore, a higher risk of roadway accidents across America.
Greg Baumgartner, a personal injury attorney, states, “Because of the many […] fatal accidents involving drowsy drivers, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has taken upon itself to study sleep apnea and take steps to educate both motor carriers and commercial drivers.”
Education about and treatment of OSA will be the primary solutions to this health risk, so here a few OSA symptoms you should be aware of:
- Concentration issues
- Perpetual daytime drowsiness
- Memory trouble
- Choking or gasping while sleeping
If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, remember, sleep apnea is treatable.
At TMJ and Sleep Solutions of Alabama, we work closely with board certified sleep physicians to get patients diagnosed and treated for sleep breathing disorders. We know every case is different and provide dental sleep devices as an alternative treatment for CPAP intolerant patients. If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, remember, OSA is treatable and be sure to contact us.