Sleep Apnea Syndrome Can Be Life Threatening

If your loud snoring is disturbing either you or your partner, then it may be time to see a doctor about apnea. Sleep apnea syndrome is a serious sleep disorder that occurs when breathing frequently stops for brief periods throughout the night. Not only does this condition reduce the quality of your sleep, but it can also lead to other serious health conditions. Do you know the symptoms of sleep apnea and the treatments available.

Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type of apnea and is due to an obstruction in the throat during sleep. The narrowing of the upper airway can be a result of several factors including inherent physical characteristics, excess weight, and alcohol consumption before sleep.

Central sleep apnea is caused by a delay in the signal from the brain to breath. With both obstructive and central apnea you must wake up briefly to breathe, sometimes hundreds of times during the night. Usually there is no memory of these brief awakenings.

Because sufferers are asleep when they experience their symptoms, it's usually the individual's partner who spots the problem. Patients with sleep apnea syndrome often snore very loudly, wake up gasping, experience night sweats and make frequent trips to the bathroom during the night.

Insomnia is also a common occurrence. Consequently, patients experience illnesses that accompany sleep deprivation like high blood pressure, depression, difficulty concentrating and reduced libido. If sleep apnea is not diagnosed and treated properly, then it can be life threatening.

A sleep test, called polysomnography is usually done in a sleep disorder center to diagnose sleep apnea.

Mild cases of sleep apnea syndrome are usually treated by some behavioral changes like losing weight or sleeping on your side. There are also mouth devices that can help keep the airway open by bringing the jaw forward, elevating the soft palate or preventing the tongue from falling back into the airway and blocking breathing. Moderate to severe sleep apnea is usually treated with a CPAP mask and a CPAP machine. This machine blows air into your nose via a nose mask, keeping the airway open and unobstructed.

Some people have facial deformities that may cause the sleep apnea. There are several other surgical apnea treatments like removing excess tissue to clear the airway, moving the tongue forward, and moving the upper and lower jaw forward.

Patients who have been treated for sleep apnea syndrome usually report greater alertness and less daytime sleepiness. They also are in a better mood and perform better at work. Besides improving your quality of life, getting prompt treatment for sleep apnea can prevent numerous other illness. You'll be able to sleep better knowing that you're taking care of your health.