What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a serious sleeping medical condition that alters a patient’s breathing pattern drastically during their sleep which breathing may suddenly stop. Patients with Sleep Apnea face serious health hazards and struggle to get enough breath during their sleep leading to loud snoring, gasping for air, and choking. This condition affects the airways and the breathing condition worsens as an individual with this condition goes to sleep.
It can affect all age groups and people with Sleep Apnea face problems on daily basis during their sleep. It not only affects sleep but also a person’s academic and work-life performance and routines. If you find yourself gasping, choking, or snoring daily while you fall asleep then it can be a sign of Sleep Apnea.
Is There Any Type of Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea can be categorized into three types of Sleep Apnea conditions:
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)- occurs when breathing gets obstructed when muscles of the throat relax during a patient’s sleep
- Central Sleep Apnea (CSA)- occurs when the brain is unable or fails or finds it difficult to send proper signals straight to muscles that are responsible for controlling the breath
- Complex Sleep Apnea syndrome- a combination of OSA and CSA. Also known as treatment-emergent central Sleep Apnea.
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)?
It is the most typical type of Sleep Apnea. The most common cause of this illness is a breathing obstruction in the throat and mouth. Heavy snoring may result from Obstructive Sleep Apnea. When the tongue and soft palate rattle against one another, Obstructive Sleep Apnea occurs. A person with OSA could experience breathing difficulties when they awaken. Even though their lungs are in good shape, there is not enough breathing level. This kind of Sleep Apnea typically affects older individuals, pregnant women, and people who sleep on their backs. Additionally, as people age, they become more prone to conditions of Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
What are The Major Signs of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)?
The symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea can be experienced in patients with Complex Sleep Apnea syndrome as it’s a combination of both OSA and CSA. The symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) are as follows:
- Sleeping in the daytime excessively
- Snoring loudly when you sleep
- Sudden or pattern-wise breathing stops during sleep
- Gasping for air during sleep
- Abruptly getting awake from sleep
- Unable to sleep properly
- Feeling agitated
- Mood swings
- Trouble with concentration
- High levels of blood pressure
- Desire to have sex decreases
What Causes Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) to Occur in Person?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) major cause is too much relaxation of muscles in the back of the throat. To open up space to breathe unusually. Throat muscles include the soft palate (back region of the mouth’s rooftop), uvula (tissue that hangs from the soft palate in a triangle shape), the tongue, and the tonsils.
This type of Sleep Apnea occurs due to low levels of Oxygen supply in your blood. It happens because the airways get newer or close during breathing for 10 seconds or longer. When throat muscles relax too much it narrows or closes the airway accumulating too much Carbon Dioxidedecreasing the Oxygen level in the blood.
Low levels of Oxygen in the blood alarm brain to fix the impaired breathing which is happening by finding ways to reopen your airways. The process of this is so quick that you are unable to detect or remember it when you get awake.
How to Improve the Condition of Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
There is a variety of ways to treat Sleep Apnea. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) needs specific treatment which can differ from Central Sleep Apnea (CSA). Numerous treatment techniques, like prescription drugs and, in some cases, surgery, can aid in clearing constricted airways while you’re asleep.
Before getting into treatment your doctor will run through some medical tests to diagnose your conditions, and the signs and symptoms you’re exhibiting. Tests like Polysomnography, physical examinations, throat and nose examinations, neck and waist circumference, blood pressure checkups, and Home sleep apnea testing are usually done for the diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea condition.
Home Remedies to Treat Mild OSA Include:
- Losing weight
- Doing regular exercises
- Quitting or avoiding alcohol
- Using medications that can treat your underlying allergy issues
- Taking nasal decongestant
- Quitting smoking
- Avoiding sleeping on the back
Positive Airway Pressure (PAP)
This device delivers air pressure while you sleep. It is fit into or placed over your nose and mouth during sleep. PAP helps to reduce sleep obstruction that occurs while sleeping and helps to prevent excessive daytime sleepiness. There are many types of PAP available for the treatment of OSA. Among that, CPAP is commonly used. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is a mask that helps to blow out air to the airway helping them to breathe enough during sleep time by applying this mask over the nose or mouth. Another type of PAP is Bilevel positive airway pressure (BPAP). It presents a certain amount of pressure and delivers it when you’re breathing during your sleep.
Oral devices are alternative to positive airway pressure (PAP) and it is suggested by doctors for patients who are having OSA at a mild level or in severe cases where the patient can’t use CPAP. This device reduces sleepiness and improves the quality of life. The mouthpiece is designed in such a way that it helps open your mouth and keep the airway open by bringing forward the lower jaw. relief snoring or adjust your tongue position differently.
Surgery is done only if other therapies and medications don’t work out in the end. Surgeries include:
- Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP)
- Stimulation of upper airway through thin impulse generator
- Jaw surgery through maxillomandibular advancement
- Opening of the neck through a tracheostomy
- Nasal surgery for removal of polyps
- Straightening deviated septum through nose surgery
- Removal of enlarged tonsils or adenoids
Sleep apnea is a serious sleeping medical condition that alters a patient’s breathing pattern drastically during their sleep which breathing may suddenly stop. Sleep Apnea can be categorized into three types: Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), Central Sleep Apnea (CSA), and Complex Sleep Apnea syndrome.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is the most typical type of Sleep Apnea. The most common cause of this illness is a breathing obstruction in the throat and mouth. When the tongue and soft palate rattle against one another, Obstructive Sleep Apnea occurs. A person with OSA could experience breathing difficulties when they awaken.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) major cause is too much relaxation of muscles in the back of the throat. There is a variety of ways to treat Sleep Apnea. Numerous treatment techniques, like prescription drugs and, in some cases, surgery, can aid in clearing constricted airways while you’re asleep.