5 sleep apnea myths: debunked

November 10, 2023

Sleep apnea is a widespread sleep disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. Despite its prevalence, there are several myths surrounding the sleep disorder and it remains significantly underdiagnosed, with up to 90% of sufferers remaining undiagnosed. Here are 5 sleep apnea myths we frequently hear, and the real truth behind them.

Level 1 Sleep Study


Sleep apnea testing must be done in a lab or hospital

Many people believe that completing a sleep study means spending a night in a hospital or a clinical sleep lab, hooked up to a myriad of wires and sensors. While in-lab sleep studies (typically known as level 1 studies) are necessary in some cases, they are not the only option.



There are three different types of sleep studies, and one of the most convenient and accessible options is the home sleep apnea test (HSAT), also known as a level 3 sleep study. These sleep studies can be conducted in the comfort of your own home, using portable monitoring devices that are easy to set up. At Careica Health, we offer level 3 sleep studies that provide accurate results from the comfort of your own bed! Book your at-home sleep study today.

CPAP Therapy


CPAP is the only treatment option for sleep apnea

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy is one of the most effective treatments for sleep apnea—but it’s not the only option available! Unfortunately, many people are deterred by the idea of wearing a mask while they sleep and avoid treatment of their sleep apnea.



There are several alternative treatments for sleep apnea, and at Careica Health, we offer two great options: oral appliances and eXciteOSA. CPAP masks have also come a long way over the years, and there are now many great low-profile options to get a comfortable, restful night’s sleep.

oral appliance therapy man

Oral appliances

Custom-made devices that are designed to keep your airway open by repositioning the jaw and tongue. They are discreet, comfortable, and highly effective for mild to moderate sleep apnea case



A breakthrough daytime therapy for mild sleep apnea and snoring. It’s an oral device that works by providing gentle stimulation to the tongue and other muscles in the upper airway to help prevent collapse and improve breathing during sleep.


Sleep apnea is just snoring

One of the top myths we encounter is that snoring and sleep apnea are one in the same. We often hear “oh, it’s just snoring!” but what many fail to recognize is that it’s a serious health condition with a broader range of symptoms and health risks that come with it.

Normal breathing

Unobstructed airway


Partial obstruction of airway

Sleep apnea

Complete obstruction of airway


Snoring is a common symptom of sleep apnea, but there are many others. Snoring occurs when our neck muscle relax during sleep, causing the throat to partially close. The narrow airway causes the vibration sound known as snoring. On the other hand, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) occurs when there is a complete blockage in your upper airway during sleep, causing shallow breaths or pauses in your breathing. There are many snorers without sleep apnea, and there are also sleep apnea sufferers who do not snore.


Sleep apnea only affects overweight people

Some people believe that sleep apnea only affects individuals who are overweight or obese, but this is not the case.



While obesity is a risk factor for sleep apnea, the condition can affect people of all body types. Genetics, anatomical factors, and lifestyle choices can also contribute to the development of sleep apnea in individuals who may not be overweight.


It’s mostly men who have sleep apnea, not women

A common misconception is that sleep apnea is a condition that predominantly affects men and that it is not a concern for women.



Sleep apnea affects a significant number of women. In fact, sleep apnea occurs in 50% of women aged 20-70 years old and 47%-67% of post-menopausal women have sleep apnea. Symptoms often differ in women compared to men, including difficulty falling asleep, night sweats and nightmares. Unfortunately, these symptoms are frequently mistaken for depression or menopause.

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End snoring and sleep apnea for good

Wake up to better sleep and a better life. Get started by taking our sleep quiz or book a free discovery call to learn more! Or ready to get tested? Book your at-home sleep study today!