A man lies in bed wide awake.Sleep is one of the most basic requirements for good health, yet a good night’s sleep eludes about 40 million Americans.

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that can signal more serious medical issues. If left untreated, it can even be life threatening. Sleep apnea may be associated with an irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, heart attack or stroke, daytime sleepiness and increased risk of accidents at work or while driving.

If you or your partner struggle with getting a good night’s sleep, be sure to recognize the symptoms and consider a sleep study. Make 2015 the year to address your sleep issues.

Sleep apnea symptoms include:

  • Loud snoring
  • Being overweight
  • High blood pressure
  • Some physical abnormality in the nose, throat or other parts of the upper airway

Use of alcohol and sleeping pills increases the frequency and duration of pauses in your breathing that occur with sleep apnea.