Sleepy in the Daytime? Take This Self-Test

Evaluating Your Own Snoring/Sleeping Problems

For a home evaluation of your need to seek help with your snoring and/or sleeping problem, you can take what is called the Epworth Sleepiness Scale test.

The Epworth presents various daily life situations and asks you to rate your chances of falling asleep during one of those events. After scoring yourself on each situation —
with 0 meaning there is almost no chance of falling asleep and 3 indicating a high likelihood of dozing off — you add up the points, and — surprise, surprise! — the higher the point total, the more you’re likely to need help.

But first, please take the test, and then we’ll give you a guideline to go by to seek further evaluation and treatment.

The Epworth Scale goes like this: 0 means “unlikely to fall asleep,” 1 a “slight risk of falling asleep,” 2 a “moderate risk of falling asleep,” and 3 a “high likelihood of falling asleep.”

Here are the situations, so rate yourself on each one from 0 to 3 (none should go unscored):

  • Sitting and reading
  • Watching television
  • Sitting inactive in a public place
  • As a passenger in a car riding for an hour, no breaks
  • Lying down to rest in the afternoon
  • Sitting and talking with someone
  • Sitting quietly after lunch, without alcohol
  • In a car, while stopped for a few minutes in traffic

There are eight situations with 3 being the highest, so there’s a total of 24 points possible. Here’s how to rate yourself when you add up the points:

0-9 = Average daytime sleepiness (nothing to really worry about)
10-15 = Excessive daytime sleepiness (time to start getting concerned)
16-24 = Moderate to severe daytime sleepiness (seek professional help for sure)

The semantics here are a bit weird in that “excessive” might seem worse than “moderate,” but go by the points: The more points beyond 9 you tally, the more you need to be concerned.

We at The Snoring Center would recommend anyone with a 10 or above to seek professional help, at least from one’s primary physician. And as your score rises to 15 and beyond, it’s probably a good idea to seek out sleep professionals for an evaluation.

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