Sleep-Related Disorders: Essential Information

Statistics tell us that around 2.5 million Australians actually suffer with a sleep-related disorder, which might go undetected for many years, leaving the person feeling constantly fatigued, due to lack of sleep.

How could a person not know they are not sleeping adequately?

The answer is, quite easily; when a sleeping person’s airways touch, this can cause a deflation, which blocks the airways, and the natural response is for the person to wake up. They would be drowsy and wonder why they woke, then simply forget about it and go back to sleep, and in most cases, the person would not recall these interruptions, and as time passes, the lack of sleep will lead to symptoms like feeling tired all the time, and becoming irritable for the slightest of reasons, which is another tell-tale sign of sleep deprivation.

Common Symptoms of Sleep Apnoea

If you suffer with any of the following, you should investigate further:

  • Constant feeling of tiredness.
  • Easily irritated and frequently losing your cool.
  • The inability to focus for long periods.
  • Sudden bouts of drowsiness.

If you suffer from any of the above, visit a major chemist and take a sleep apnoea test, which will reveal whether or not further investigation is required.

Sleep Apnoea Test
The test is carried out at home, and you hire the equipment, which will monitor your blood-oxygen levels, your heart rate and brain activity, while you sleep. The results are uploaded from the device and sent to a sleep specialist, who can recommend a treatment.

Common Sleep Apnoea Behaviours
Those who suffer from an obstructive sleep disorder would exhibit the following sleep behaviours:

  • Waking for no apparent reason (multiple times in a night).
  • Making loud gasping or choking noises.
  • Loud snoring often accompanies sleep apnoea.
  • Irregular breathing patterns.

If your doctor suspects you are having these issues, they would refer you to a sleep centre, where you would spend one night and your sleeping behaviours are observed and recorded.

Potential Treatments
There are several methods that offer the desired result, one being the use of a CPAP machine – constant positive airways pressure (CPAP) – the person wears a mask, which might cover the mouth and nose, or only the nose, and the air pressure in the airways prevents any closure, thus allowing for deep sleep.

If you suspect that you might be suffering from a sleep disorder, visit a chemist and take the sleep apnoea test, which could reveal the real reason why you are feeling so run down.


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