Sleep Apnea Disability

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What Are the Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea?

Most people experience occasional sleep issues or insomnia due to various health issues. Stress, life-related problems, trauma, or a stressful event are some of the common reasons people face sleeping issues. Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that usually occurs when an individual’s breathing pattern is interrupted during sleep. 

It is estimated that almost 22 million people in the United States suffer from sleep apnea. With this condition, the breathing of an individual repeatedly starts and stops in a manner that can be harmful. It is a serious condition that increases the risk of several health complications. For example, it has been linked with increased risk of high blood pressure and obesity. 

When left untreated, it can lead to dangerous consequences that may impact the quality of a person’s life. Here, we have highlighted some warning signs. Symptoms may vary from individual to individual but these are the common signs and symptoms that people who are diagnosed with this condition often experience. In some cases, sleep apnea increases the risk of heart diseases and stroke. You can seek disability for Sleep Apneaif you suffer debilitating symptoms related to this condition. 

The following are some of the warning signs associated with sleep apnea: 

  • Loud snoring that may come and go throughout the night and is so loud that it disturbs others sleeping nearby
  • Waking up with a dry throat because the condition impairs normal breathing so that people are forced to breathe from the mouths
  • Waking up with a choking sensation
  • Dizziness when waking up
  • Restless sleep
  • Insomnia
  • Lack of energy and motivation throughout the day
  • Feeling sleepy while driving 
  • Morning headaches because of lack of proper sleep and oxygen 
  • Forgetfulness 
  • Mood swings
  • Nightmares

These are some of the acute symptoms that can deteriorate the quality of a person’s life. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should consider consulting a healthcare provider. 

Warning signs in children: 

  • Mouth breathing while sleeping
  • Loud snoring
  • Feeling lethargic and morning sleepiness
  • Bedwetting
  • Behavioral issues

How to treat sleep apnea naturally? 

arning Signs of Sleep Apnea

 

Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is a treatment method for patients who have sleep apnea. CPAP machines use mild air pressure to keep the airways open, and are typically used by patients who have breathing problems during sleep. Many people find wearing a CPAP mask at night a little uncomfortable. Certain natural treatments may help to treat the condition naturally. You could try adopting these methods to treat the disease naturally: 

  1. Maintain a healthy weight – People with breathing issues are at higher risk of experiencing complications and breathing issues. To eliminate the need for long-term CPAP therapy and other difficulties, an individual should maintain a healthy body weight. Losing weight may help in decreasing the impact of sleep apnea.
  2. Exercise regularly – Regularly exercising and staying physically active will help prevent the risk of various complications. Therefore, individuals suffering from health conditions should exercise regularly. For less strenuous activity, try yoga or meditating. 
  3. Avoid alcohol and smoking – An individual experiencing sleep issues should avoid alcohol and smoking. These can have adverse effects and may worsen the condition. Doctors usually suggest limiting alcohol intake and quitting smoking to reduce the complications associated with sleep apnea. 
  4. Change your sleep pattern – Studies have found that sleeping on your back can worsen the condition. Individuals should try sleeping on one side to keep the airways open and allow for natural breathing while sleeping. Altering the position may help reduce the symptoms and complications of sleep apnea. 
  5. Consider using a humidifier – You may even try using a humidifier to add moisture to the air. Humidifiers will open airways which will encourage clear breathing. 

These are some of the natural alternatives and home remedies to treat sleep apnea that may help reduce the risk of complications. 

Is sleep apnea a disability?

If your condition is severe, a doctor may recommend that you undergo a sleep study. Polysomnography, also called a sleep study, is a comprehensive test used to diagnose sleep disorders. A sleep study is the gold standard for diagnosing sleep apnea. People dealing with critical health conditions often consider applying for disability benefits. 

The Social Security Administration does not include a listing for this condition. It does have listings for breathing disorders, health disorders, heart problems, and mental health issues. That does not, however, mean that you cannot receive disability benefits due to sleep apnea. It simply means that you will have to qualify under an alternative method. 

The following factors may increase the risk of sleep apnea: 

  • Overweight and obesity
  • Medical conditions such as thyroid dysfunction and diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Decreased muscle tone
  • Smoking
  • Family history or genetics
  • Men are at higher risk of dealing with the condition 

You may be qualified for disability benefits if you meet the criteria of one of the listings. You will be approved faster when you have medical evidence to prove your condition. You may also be entitled to short term disability benefits, even if you do not meet the criteria of a long term disability. 

If you do not meet the Blue Book criteria, you may be able to establish entitlement to disability benefits through a Residual Functional Capacity assessment. A doctor or examiner from Disability Determination Services will complete a RFC form that determines your remaining functional capabilities in spite of your condition. 

The Social Security Administration will evaluate the RFC assessment to determine whether you are capable of performing other jobs when considering your age, work history, education, and other factors. Based on the results, they will either approve your application or reject it because they have determined you can still earn a living in alternative employment. 

Getting disability benefits for sleep apnea 

Getting approved for disability benefits from SSA entirely depends on the evidence and documents that you are able to provide claims adjudicators. If you do not have relevant medical documentation of a diagnosis and symptoms, the chances of getting approved decrease significantly. 

Sleep apnea affects both children and adults. It is important to treat the condition as soon as possible. You should pay attention to the warning signs mentioned above. If you or your loved one is exhibiting any of these symptoms, you must immediately get in touch with your doctor. They will examine your body and suggest the ideal treatment for you. 

If the condition prevents you from working, you can contact a legal professional to learn more about the disability application process. They will review your application and help you determine whether you meet the eligibility criteria. Winning a disability claim for this condition alone is not easy. 

The chances of getting SSDI or SSI benefits increase with a knowledgeable attorney on your side. Document all the symptoms and limitations you are experiencing. Then discuss the situation with your healthcare provider. 

You can hire an experienced disability lawyer to stand by your side throughout the process. He can coordinate with everyone on your behalf and work towards a successful decision for your disability application or appeal.