Around sixty percent of people struggling with sleep apnea are overweight. The effects of mild obstructive sleep apnea have the ability to be cured if a patient loses enough weight, but that can be difficult if one is consistently tired or fatigued by sleep apnea. While being overweight can lead to sleep apnea, having sleep apnea can also lead to becoming overweight.
If left untreated, sleep apnea could lead to a range of diseases, such as: cardiovascular disease, stroke, high blood pressure, an increased risk for different cancers, increased weight gain, thyroid problems, and type two diabetes. Sleep apnea can typically be diagnosed when the patient is monitored overnight in a designated sleep lab. Fortunately, now that technology is quickly progressing, patients have the ability to take the sleep test at home with the appropriate monitoring equipment.
OSA and Drowsy Driving:
OSA has the potential to be severe and even life threatening. In fact, a few studies have shown that the decrease in the typical OSA lifespan is around 20 years! The physical maladies associated with OSA have a simple way to cross over from your body to threaten the safety of others, and the rest of society at large. According to AAA reports, each year, an estimated 100,00 police reported accidents are the direct result of driver fatigue and drowsy driving. Some studies have even found that a person’s cognitive psychomotor skills to be as impaired after a day without sleep as with a BAC of 0.10%, which is actually higher than the legal limit for a DWI conviction in all US States.
What Are The Warning Signs of Drowsy Driving?
Some warnings signs you may experience that signify drowsiness while driving are:
- Lacking ability to recall the last few miles traveled
- Experiencing disconnected or wandering thoughts
- Having trouble focusing or keeping eyes open
- Feeling like your head is very heavy
- Drifting out of the driving lane, even onto the rumble strips
- Repeated yawning
- Accidentally tailgating other vehicles
- Ignoring traffic signs
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