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How Many Apnea Events Are Normal?

July 12, 2022


Man sleeping on his side in bed with a CPAP Mask on

Without knowing how many apnea events to expect, how can you know your danger level?

When diagnosed with sleep apnea, many patients leave the doctor’s office without asking the right questions. For example, “How many apnea events should I expect?” You need to know your baseline of events and the goal for your situation so that you know if the treatment is working. Let’s take a look at how to figure this out! 

What is an apnea event? 

When you suffer from sleep apnea, you stop breathing throughout your sleep. This is commonly referred to as “apnea”, “an event”, or “an apnea event”. Most PAP machines track your apnea events and provide you with an AHI score every day. “The AHI is the number of times you have apnea or hypopnea during one night, divided by the hours of sleep.” (WebMD.com)

What’s my baseline AHI? 

To get an accurate diagnosis of sleep apnea, you will undergo a sleep study. During this sleep study, you’ll sleep in a controlled environment with each apnea recorded. This is your baseline and the AHI that you want to improve. 

Every patient is different, so it’s important to know your baseline AHI.

How many apnea events are normal?

For children, no apnea events is the norm, so anything over five events per hour is considered out of the normal range, and requires treatment. 

For adults, here are the ranges of AHI and what they represent: 

Less than five apnea events per hour.
This is the ideal range and considered normal. 

Between five and 14 apnea events per hour. 
This is mild sleep apnea. If your range is here, you can expect to feel reasonably rested with the use of the right PAP machine. 

AHI between 14 and 29. 
This is considered moderate sleep apnea. Finding the right PAP machine can help you function. Using other methods to lessen your episodes could be beneficial too. 

AHI of 30 and above. 
This is considered severe sleep apnea. Your lack of sleep is probably affecting your daily life. Using a PAP machine is imperative and treating the root cause of your sleep problems is recommended. 

A diagnosis of sleep apnea can be overwhelming. Luckily, we are here to help! Whether you need a sleep study, or you need the perfect PAP machine for you, we are here to help. Get in touch with us today: 1-800-758-7571

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