Sleep apnea is one of the sleep disorders people experience without observing its earlier symptoms until it becomes a serious health challenge. Whereby early detection of sleep apnea the causes and remedy will go a long way to avoid its complication.
Sleep apnea is an involuntary cessation of breathing that occurs while the patient is asleep. It is a sleep disorder which occurs when the upper airway (nose or throat) becomes continually blocked during sleep, reducing or completely stopping airflow.
CAUSES OF SLEEP APNEA
Sleep apnea can be caused by someone’s physical structure or medical conditions.
These include endocrine disorders, large tonsils, obesity, neuromuscular disorders (heart or Kidney failure),
Other conditions include certain genetic syndromes and premature birth.
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Those with obesity have much fat stored in their neck and this can block the upper airway. Also, large tonsils are contributing factors to sleep apnea because they narrow the upper airway.
Certain conditions like neuromuscular disorders that interfere with the brain signals to airway and chest muscles can also result in sleep apnea.
Prolonged heart diseases and kidney failure can also cause sleep apnea.
Babies born prematurely before nine months of pregnancy have a higher risk of having sleep apnea.
THE EFFECTS OF SLEEP APNEA
Sleep apnea is characterized by an absence or a reduction in breathing, frequent loud snoring and gasping for air while sleeping.
It can cause fatigue and excessive daytime sleepiness. Headache when awake from sleep, attention declination or sexual dysfunction. Waking up several times during the night to urinate.
Untreated or undiagnosed sleep apnea can lead to serious complications such as behavioral disorders, heart attacks, glaucoma, diabetes, and cancer.
If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, it is important that you adopt a healthy lifestyle attitude and maintain an open airway during sleep.
Some breathing devices could be applied during sleep like the positive airway pressure (PAP) machine or continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machines.
Mouthpiece, or implants and the use of prescribed drugs.
If you have any worry that you may be experiencing sleep apnea, consult your doctor immediately.
Your doctor will examine you and review your medical history and the symptoms, in order to make a recommendation.
The recommendation may include a change in lifestyle, eating a heart-healthy diet, and avoiding smoking and alcohol.