The Sleep Apnoea Witch Hunt

cup of tea and coffeeRecently there is a move to test truckers and pilot for sleep apnoea, especially those with a Body Mass Index of 35 or more, who snore, have high blood pressure and are Hispanic or African-American. An article from tells about some facts about sleep apnoea and the witch hunt.

  • The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee and the Medical Review Board have declared war on drivers with a BMI of 35 or more, even though they admit it might be a BMI of 30 or maybe even 40, that plays a role in sleep apnoea.

  • There are no true statistics to provide this hunt with facts. The National Institute of Health “estimates” that 18 million people, about 4 percent of men and 2 percent of women between the ages of 30 and 60, have sleep apnoea. If 18 million sounds high, consider that 30 million have insomnia.

  • The FMCSA combined their data with the data from the UPenn sleep study in an attempt to confirm that sleep apnoea increased truck driving accidents. The results - sleep apnoea did not show a statistical increase in motor vehicle accidents. The data did show however that younger, inexperienced commercial drivers are at an increased risk of causing commercial motor vehicle accidents.

  • There are a number of symptoms and triggers associated with sleep apnoea that you should be aware of:

    • A Body Mass Index above 30, 35 or 40 (no exact BMI has been proven to be the magic number)

    • Loud snoring (snoring itself does not automatically qualify you)

    • Interruption of breathing while sleeping (five or more times during one sleeping cycle)

    • Feeling tired during the day

    • Consuming caffeine to keep alert

    • Smoking

    • High blood pressure (although this could be more related to obesity than sleep apnoea)

    • Diabetes (although this could be more related to obesity than sleep apnoea)

    • Being male (although females can also have sleep apnoea)

    • Being African-American or Hispanic

    • Depression

    • Headaches

    • Being between 40 and 60 years of age (although children can also be effected and those over 60 see a drop in sleep apnoea cases)

Read more here:

Image Courtesy of David phiseksit /

Somnowell Inventor - Visiting Professor Simon Ash FDS MSc MOrth BDS

Prof. Ash is the inventor of the highly successful SOMNOWELL Chrome device for snoring and sleep apnoea.

The Somnowell Chrome is made to exacting standards in the Somnowell laboratory under the supervision of Visiting Professor Simon Ash. Prof. Ash and his master technicians create each Somnowell Chrome device using their wealth of experience and expertise.

Prof. Ash works at the forefront of his profession. He is a Consultant and Specialist Orthodontist with over 30 years clinical experience, with a special interest in sleep related breathing disorders, TMJD, and bruxism. He currently works in Harley Street London and two private hospitals in London as part of a multi-disciplinary team managing snoring and sleep apnoea, and is Visiting Professor of Orthodontics at the BPP University.