apnea & depression


Did you know that the signs and symptoms of sleep apnea are…well…more feminine in women than in men? It’s true! You don’t have to be a loud snorer—shaking the bed every minute and ripping the covers off—to have sleep apnea. You may snore so lightly that your bed-partner doesn’t even think you do. Your arousals may be nothing more than a gentle rolling of your head. And the bed may look the same as when you fell asleep.

What you do share in common with the men, however, are the condition and the symptoms. Sleep apnea describes a sleep disorder where, due to a narrowing of our airway during sleep, our brain has to wake us up repeatedly in order to keep the amount of oxygen in the body at a safe level. But we don’t remember the arousals!

The symptoms of apnea are: daytime fatigue, tiredness, feeling run down, low energy, mild depression, elevated blood pressure, a need to take naps during the day, frequent awakenings from sleep during the night—especially to use the bathroom, gastro-esophogeal reflux (heartburn), difficulty staying awake while driving a car, reading a magazine, watching television, while sitting quietly alone, and waking up from sleep feeling unrested.

But beware! Apnea is very frequently mis-diagnosed in women and treated as depression. The symptoms are similar—but the causes couldn’t be more different. If you or someone you know suffers from two or more of the symptoms listed above, do yourself a favor and visit a sleep specialist today. Above all, make sure you are treating the cause, and not the symptom!

Back to Snoring & Sleep Apnea page

To access our Dreamcast Library, log in, then click here.
Not registered? Click here.

It's free! No fees or subscriptions.