Sleep Apnea is when you are unable to breathe while sleeping. Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the upper airway is partially or completely blocked in the closed eyes. This makes the diaphragm and chest muscles more difficult to open the obstructive airways and to draw air into the lungs. You may not sleep well, but you might not know that this happened. It can also reduce oxygenation to vital organs and cause an irregular heartbeat.
The most common signs of obstructive sleep apnea are:
- Drowsiness or fatigue during the day
- Dry mouth or sore throat when you wake up
- Headaches in the morning
- Problem concentration, forgetfulness, depression or irritability
- Restless while sleeping
- Problems with sex
- You wake up suddenly and feel like you are choking
- Problems occur during waking up in the morning
Chances are high that, if you share a bed with someone, they might notice the symptoms before you do.
Before going in for treatments, doctors generally prefer to do diagnoses and tests to precisely grasp the situation and the factors behind it. To diagnose your condition, your doctor can make an assessment based on your signs and symptoms, your examination and your test. Your doctor may refer you to a sleep specialist at the sleep center for further assessment. You will undergo a physical examination and your doctor will examine the neck, mouth and nose for additional tissue or abnormalities. Your doctor can measure your neck and waist circumference and measure your blood pressure. A sleep specialist can make additional judgments to diagnose your condition, determine the severity of the condition, and plan your treatment. Estimates can include monitoring night breathing and other body functions during sleep.
The following treatments are then undertaken accordingly:
For mild obstructive sleep apnea cases, your doctor can recommend changing your lifestyle, and some factors importantly-
- Lose weight if you are overweight.
- Exercise regularly.
- Quit smoking.
- Use nasal medication for decongestants or allergies.
- Avoid sedatives such as anxiety medications or sleeping pills.
If these steps do not improve the quality of your sleep or if your apnea is moderate to severe, your doctor can recommend other treatments. Some devices can help open a blocked airway. In other cases, surgery may be needed.
When nothing else working, this is the preferred way. Following types of surgical methods can be used.
- Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, ie, surgical removal of the tissue.
- Upper Airway Stimulation
- Maxillomandibular advancement (Jaw Surgery)
- Neck Surgery by Tracheostomy
A proper time frame is given for the surgery to show its impacts, the condition becomes controllable, and if the patient is dedicated and willing, this is easily cured.
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