Sleep apnea is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep.This results in poor sleep quality that makes you tired during the day. Sleep apnea is one of the leading causes of excessive daytime sleepiness. Breathing pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes. They often occur 5 to30 times or more an hour. Typically, normal breathing then starts again sometimes with a choking and industrial-strength snoring. Sleep apnea sharply elevates the risk of stroke or death.
Some researchers believe that sleepiness associated with sleep apnea is the greatest risk factor for car accidents. Studies continue to report that drowsy driving is as risky as drunk driving. Several studies have suggested that people with sleep apnea have two to three times as many car accidents, and five to seven times the risk for multiple accidents.