What is Sleep Apnea?
“Apnea” means, quite literally, “without breath”. A person with Sleep Apnea stops breathing during sleep, for up to 20 or 30 seconds, as many as hundreds of times each night. The apnea is caused by a collapsed or obstructed airway, which prevents air from reaching the lungs.
Who Does It Affect?
Sleep Apnea sufferers are not alone. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), as it is officially termed, is a common disorder affecting:
- 18 million Americans
- 10% of Americans over age 65
- 20% of obese Americans
- 47% of menopausal women
Sleep Apnea can often wake or disturb the affected person’s bedmate as well – affecting the partner’s physical, mental and emotional health.