How Can Apnea Apps Help Diagnose Sleep Apnea?

How Can Apnea Apps Help Diagnose Sleep Apnea?

When it comes to diagnosing sleep apnea, the best way to test for this serious condition is an overnight polysomnography test in a sleep clinic. Still, despite this being the “gold standard” in diagnostic care, many people are unable or unwilling to participate in this sort of testing. Sometimes it’s a matter of insurance, other times it just is too big a burden on the patient. So, what’s a person to do? If you are feeling tired, sluggish, depressed, or notice other conditions like diabetes or Alzheimer’s disease worsening and your partner complains of your snoring or stopping and restarting breathing in the middle of the night, you could have sleep apnea. But if you can’t make it to a sleep clinic, how exactly can you be diagnosed?Thankfully, there are home diagnostic devices that can be used overnight in the comfort and privacy of your own bedroom, but even those may not be covered by insurance, and may be too much effort for some. Enter sleep apnea diagnostic apps. These apps have been growing in popularity in recent years, with technology improving and apps becoming more accurate. In fact, a recent study out of Seoul National University Bundang Hospital at Seoul National University College of Medicine in Seongnam, South Korea found that using an app to record snoring and breathing episodes throughout the night is actually quite accurate in helping to diagnose sleep apnea.The apps record the sound of your snoring and breathing, and while the apps themselves don’t diagnose sleep apnea, they provide valuable data to your doctor. According to the study at Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, these apps are over 80 percent accurate!So, while an app can’t replace a doctor’s diagnosis, how can it help exactly? Great question! If you suspect you have sleep apnea, or are even just curious, trying the app can’t hurt, and you can then bring the data and recordings to your doctor. The apps work on smart devices like your cell phone or tablet, and the data can help your doctor determine if you truly need a sleep study. This can go a long way with your insurance provider, and more importantly, it can potentially save your life or the life of someone you love.If you do suspect you could have sleep apnea but aren’t sure where to begin, try downloading an apnea app and seeing if your doctor things your sleep breathing warrants further investigation. Think of it as a first step on a journey to the wellness you deserve.To learn more about sleep apnea and sleep apnea treatment, please contact Dr. Peterson’s office today!

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