Sleep apnea is a serious condition where one literally stops breathing for 10 seconds or more. This cause oxygen levels in blood to drop. It can also cause many other conditions like heart attack, heart failure, stroke, and sudden death.
WHAT EXACTLY IS SLEEP APNEA?
Sleep Apnea is a serious sleep disorder that occurs when a person’s breathing is interrupted during sleep. People with untreated Sleep Apnea stop breathing repeatedly during their sleep, sometimes hundreds of times. This means the brain — and the rest of the body — may not get enough oxygen.
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA): The more common of the two forms of apnea, it is caused by a blockage of the airway, usually when the soft tissue in the back of the throat collapses during sleep.
- Central Sleep Apnea: Unlike OSA, the airway is not blocked, but the brain fails to signal the muscles to breathe, due to instability in the respiratory control center.
- Loud snoring
- A choking or gasping sensation that wakes you up
- A sore or dry throat when you wake up
- Sleepiness or lack of energy during the day
- Restless sleep
- Forgetfulness, mood changes, and a decreased interest in sex
- Repeatedly waking up
- High blood pressure
- Heart failure -irregular heartbeat, and heart attacks
- Being male
- Being overweight
- Being over age 40
- 17 inches or greater neck size in men and 16 inches or greater in women
- Having large tonsils, a large tongue, or a small jaw bone
- Having a family history of sleep apnea
- Nasal obstruction due to a deviated septum, allergies, or sinus problems