A new study shown at CHEST 2009, the 75th annual international scientific assembly of the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP), shows that golfers with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) that received nasal positive airway pressure (NPAP) for their disorder improved their daytime sleepiness scores and lowered their golf handicap by as many as 3 strokes. Researchers suggest that the possibility of improving your golf game may be a great motivation to improve NPAP compliance rates within the golfing community.”OSAS can lead to daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and cognitive impairment, all side effects which can negatively impact a person’s ability to golf to the best of one’s ability.” said Marc L. Benton, MD, FCCP, Atlantic Sleep and Pulmonary Associates, Madison, NJ. “As any golfer knows, when your ability to think clearly or make good decisions is compromised, the likelihood of playing your best is greatly diminished,” said Dr. Benton. “Through treatment with NPAP, we can improve many cognitive metrics, such as attention span, memory, decision-making abilities, and frustration management, which may, in turn, positively affect a person’s golf game.”Study resultes showed that the best golfers, defined as HI <12, had the most substantial improvements in their game. Within this group, the average HI dropped from 9.2 (+/- 2.9) to 6.3 (+/- 3.0); the SQ score from 10.8 (+/- 1.9), to 2.8 (+/- 2.6).”The biggest handicap improvements occurred in the lower handicap, often older golfers. This group typically would be expected to trend in the opposite direction due to age-related deterioration in strength and endurance,” said Mr. Friedman. “The drop in handicap among the better golfers probably reflected that the major limiting factor was not golf skill but cognitive compromise that improved when the sleep apnea was treated.”Dr. Ban R. Barbat, a dentist in the greater Detroit area, can help improve not only your golf swing but your quality of life.