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Did you know almost three million Australians are regularly impacted with common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) yet a whopping 80 per cent remain undiagnosed*? Now it is easier than ever to get tested for OSA. Here’s what you need to know today about this common sleep disorder.

So, what exactly is obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA)? In simple terms, OSA is when breathing stops and starts repeatedly whilst someone is asleep because their throat becomes ‘blocked’. This happens when the muscles at the back of their throat relaxes more than normal again and again. This can cause their breathing to stop for a period of 10 seconds or longer. The person is likely to snore loudly and briefly wake mid sleep.

The impact of OSA can be as simple as feeling tired the following day, having a morning headache or poor memory, so over time increasing the risk of high blood pressure, stroke and heart attacks. Many people are unaware they suffer from this common sleep disorder and the reality is the results can have a negative impact on a persons life.

Tossing and turning at night and waking up gasping for air or with a dry mouth is unpleasant for anyone, yet the longer term health concerns of obstructive sleep apnoea are seriously concerning. Thankfully it is now easier than ever to get tested just by visiting your local pharmacy.

There are currently more than two million Australians who have undiagnosed OSA. So an easy option to get tested is an exciting game changer for sleep testing and sleep apnoea treatment for those potentially at risk.

The traditional pathway to get diagnosed for OSA is to make an appointment with the doctor and get a referral to a sleep physician. Then make an appointment and wait for a sleep test which takes place in a sleep lab where a sleep technician monitors overnight. Finally meet with that sleep physician to discuss the results and start therapy. This all takes a lot of time due to waiting lists, is stressful and paying for each appointment with the sleep physician can be costly.

Now anyone at risk can get tested and treated in their local PSS pharmacy and receive their results within just 7 to 10 days. There is no waiting period and not even a doctor referral is required for the level 3 home sleep test. Simply walk in and book a home sleep test for you or for someone you love at Pharmacy Sleep Services.

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5 easy signs & symptoms to help you spot obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA)

While men are more likely to suffer from sleep apnoea, other risk factors include having a family history of OSA, snoring, smoking, being over what’s considered a healthy weight (BMI) and being middle aged or older. Watch out for these potential signs below.

Do you suffer from?

  1. Regular and loud snoring.
  2. Stubborn and unexplained morning headaches.
  3. Annoying and frequent visits to bathroom throughout the night.
  4. Uncomfortable and terrifying choking/gasping for air whilst asleep.
  5. Daytime tiredness which puts you at increased risk of a car accident whilst driving due to falling asleep at the wheel.

Does this sound like you or someone you love? Discover if you’re at risk of OSA by doing a free sleep quiz.

You can also receive a $50 voucher for a home sleep test if you are potentially at risk. Terms & conditions apply.

If you’d prefer to speak to someone at your local PSS pharmacy then find your closest pharmacy here and begin your journey towards dealing with OSA and begin waking up recharged again.

* Benjafield et al., Estimation of the global prevalence and burden of obstructive sleep apnoea: a literature-based analysis, UC San Diego, 2019.

This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with Pharmacy Sleep Services.

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