Sleep Apnea: Causes and Treatments
Sleep is a very important part of human life. It is paramount for leading a healthy lifestyle. Sleep experts and medical professionals recommend up to 8 hours of sleep every day. Even then, the largest part of the world’s population hardly takes sleep seriously. Succumbing to different sleep disorders is, therefore, no surprise.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
It is a sleep disorder
that obstructs the airways when a patient is sleeping. This obstruction makes it hard for one to breathe properly when sleeping.
Most of the patients who have this condition snore at night. Depending on how severe the disorder is, the level of snoring can differ. Some severe cases of sleep apnea have patients awake throughout the night.
What Happens with sleep apnea is that it causes shortness of breath. A patient can stop breathing for a few seconds to a minute. The longer the shortness of breath lasts, the
Understanding More About Sleep Apnea and Diagnosis
Sleep apnea treatment clinics are available in different locations. The best bit about treating sleep apnea is that the condition can be diagnosed by different health specialists. It is not just a sleep expert that can help you detect the disorder. A dentist too can diagnose it. In fact, some of the treatment options for sleep apnea are offered by a prosthodontist, who specializes in creating dental appliances that can be sued for different dental procedures.
The evaluation of this disorder can have you move from one specialist to another, particularly for complex sleep apnea syndrome. There are different stages of diagnosis that allow the specialists to identify what case of sleep apnea you have and which sleep apnea treatment in Jupiter is best suited for your case. They include:
- Nocturnal Polysomnography – it is an evaluation for your heart, lungs and brain activity when you sleep. You will be hooked onto a device that monitors the activities the different parts of your body when you sleep, relative to your breathing patterns.
- Home tests – a doctor will recommend this for mild cases of sleep apnea. The test will include simplified evaluations to measure your heartbeat, breathing patterns, and blood oxygen levels.
Main Types of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea differs in types, based on the complexity, as well as the causes thereof. The main types include the following:
- Obstructive sleep apnea – it is by far the most common type of sleep apnea. It occurs when the throat muscles relax. It is also a disorder that follows obstruction of the airways due to throat related problems like tonsillitis, among others.
- Central sleep apnea – this is related to brain function. It occurs when the brain of a patient cannot send signals to the throat properly. This means that the throat muscles cannot properly control breathing at night.
- Complex sleep apnea syndrome – is a critical type of sleep apnea that happens when a patient suffers from both obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea.
How Sleep Apnea Affects the Body
Sleep apnea is a condition that varies in complexity. This means that it has the potential to affect patients differently. While the basic symptoms of the disorder are snoring while asleep, there is more that is affected. This includes the following:
- Limited oxygen flow in the brain – the shortness of breath causes insufficient oxygen levels in the body. This means that your Brian might not receive proper oxygen supply, causing dysfunctions of the brain activity.
- Morning headaches – as a consequence of the brain not getting enough oxygen while asleep, most patients with sleep apnea wake up to headaches every morning.
- Insomnia – it is sad that victims of sleep apnea suffer another sleep-related disorder called insomnia. It is a situation where one is unable to stay asleep, and in this case, because of the lack of oxygen. This then results in hypersomnia which is about excessive sleeping during the day.
- Heart palpitations – your heart beats differently when the oxygen flow is limited.
- Poor focus and concentration – given that the patient has not had proper sound sleep, it is expected that the brain is not at its optimal level. It is why such patients have a difficult time concentrating, even when it is important that they do.
The treatments of sleep apnea differ greatly based on how complex the situation is. They range from basic lifestyle changes like sleeping patterns, exercise and sleeping positions, to serious medical intervention like surgeries.