What Is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea is a common disorder where breathing stops or becomes very shallow. These interruptions can last from a few seconds to minutes and can occur more than 30 times per hour.
Sleep Apnea causes a collapse in the airways or an obstruction during sleep. Then the breath returns with a snort. People with Apnea tend to snore very loudly. However, not all people who snore have Apnea.
People most at risk for Apnea are men, overweight people, family history or small airways. Children with swollen tonsils and adenoids can also suffer from apnea.
The diagnosis is based on your medical and family history, a physical exam, and the results of a sleep exam.
What Are The Causes of Sleep Apnea?
When you sleep, all the muscles in your body relax more. This includes the muscles that help keep the throat open so air can flow into the lungs.
Normally, the throat remains open enough during sleep to allow air to pass through. However, some people have a narrower throat. When the muscles in the upper part of the throat relax during sleep, the tissues close and block the airway. This stopping of breathing is called Apnea.
Loud snoring is a warning sign of Sleep Apnea. Snoring is caused by air leaking through a narrow or blocked airway. However, not all people who snore suffer from Sleep Apnea.
Why Can Sleep Apnea Be Dangerous for You?
Although Sleep Apneas are dangerous, as far as it is known, no one has died of Sleep Apnea yet. It is well known that constantly stopping breathing during sleep has been associated with increased blood pressure and increased risk of suffering from coronary heart disease and cerebral stroke, which makes untreated Sleep Apnea considered a significant cardiovascular risk factor in the long term.
How Can Sleep Apnea Affect Your Day to Day Life?
Sleep is essential for health; that’s something that science has shown. However, many causes can make you not get enough rest, and one of them may be having a partner, who sleeps next to you, and who snores in such a way that it wakes you up and does not let you go back to sleep since the sounds are so loud that they prevent you.
Snoring is one of the most frequent problems among sleep disorders in the adult population. However, the European Sleep Institute recalls that it can be treated using different increasingly advanced techniques to end snoring.
Habitual snoring can be more than just an annoyance to the people who share the same bedroom or the same house with you. In addition to interrupting your partner’s sleep, if the origin of snoring is due to Obstructive Sleep Apnea, you may be at risk of other complications, including Daytime sleepiness. Frequent frustration or anger and heart diseases, among many other diseases.
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Nouha is a passionate journalist and a beauty lover with valuable knowledge in the health and wellness industry. Nouha worked closely with nurses and doctors treating patients with diabetes, sleeping disorder and anxiety. Nouha is currently studying to become a nurse at the University of Glasgow, Scotland.