To check if a person has a sleeping disorder, a diagnosis is made by a physician specially trained in sleep medicine. After a physical examination of the upper airway and an interview with lots of questions, if it the tests have determined that the patient has a sleeping disorder, one will have to undergo a polysomnogram (sleep test).
Most sleep centers and labs monitor 16 different sleep parameters including EEG, EKG, eye movement, chin movement, air flow, chest effort, abdomen effort, SaO2, snoring and leg movement. Each parameter serves to help the physician make a correct diagnosis.
Test are conducted in a sleep room much like a motel room. A technician will paste electrodes at certain points on your head, face, body and legs. Those electrodes will be hooked to monitoring equipment that will record the entire night study. Most patients do not experience anxiety or difficulty in going to sleep. The patients in most case are extremely sleepy and will be asleep in just a few minutes.
Once a correct diagnosis has been made, the doctor may recommend a variety of treatments available for those that suffer from sleep apnea, including medications, behavioral therapy, and, in extreme cases, surgery.