Sleep apnea – a condition often signaled by loud snoring – occurs when you stop breathing while you sleep.
"Sleep apnea is a sneaky condition that forces your brain to make a difficult decision at night: sleep or breathe," says W. Christopher Winter, MD, author of The Sleep Solution .
When you sleep, your airways can become unstable, which eventually causes a collapse that temporarily stops you from breathing. When the airways close, you begin to suffocate – your brain wakes up, you can catch your breath and restore your correct oxygen levels.
It's a lifesaver, but when that happens, it can disturb your sleep. since waking up constantly keeps your body from reaching the deep and restful sleep cycle it needs.
"Usually the sleeper has no idea what's going on, he feels sleepy the next day". PLUS: 7 Signs That You Stop Breathing When You Sleep