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Car accidents and sleep apnea — how are they related?

On Behalf of | May 16, 2017 | Car Accidents |

Numerous individuals in New Jersey can been seen driving around while drowsy. A lot of people struggle to sleep for various reasons, and it really can have a negative impact on how well they function during the day. For some, though, the lack of sleep is caused by the medical condition sleep apnea. Due to the impact this disorder has on the body, those with it are more likely to cause car accidents than those without it.

According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, roughly 25 million Americans suffer with some level of sleep apnea. Whether one’s case is mild or severe, it can still cause one to be tired during the day. This, of course, can make one prone to falling asleep at inopportune times — such as while driving.

The AASM, in order to gain a better understanding of the impacts of sleep apnea on drivers, conducted a study some time ago in which it was found that sleep apnea sufferers are 2.5 times more likely to cause car crashes. This, however, can be greatly reduced if they used positive airway pressure treatment for at least four hours nightly. Unfortunately, many people with this disorder are undiagnosed or refuse treatment.

According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drowsy driving contributes to well over 300,000 car accidents every single year. Most of these events result in injuries, but several thousand have fatal outcomes. Those in New Jersey who have been injured or who have lost loved ones in drowsy driving-related collisions caused by those with medical conditions such as sleep apnea may be entitled to seek compensation for their losses. An experienced attorney can assist by reviewing one’s case and filing and litigating civil claims if doing so is deemed appropriate.

Source:, “Risk of motor vehicle accidents is higher in people with sleep apnea“, Accessed on May 15, 2017