Sleep apnea is a condition that causes you to briefly stop breathing while you sleep. If you snore heavily, you are more likely to have sleep apnea.
When you’re awake, muscles in your nose, mouth and throat keep your airways open. This allows you to breathe freely.
Sometimes the airway at the back of your tongue (behind the uvula) collapses completely, which stops you from breathing. If your breathing stops, your brain senses this, and you wake up and start breathing again. This is called sleep apnea. Usually you will fall asleep again immediately and won’t remember these episodes.
Nasal obstruction due to deviated nasal septum, nasal polyps, and sinusitis also can aggravate the sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea can leave you feeling exhausted in the day because you keep waking up at night. This makes it difficult to concentrate and make decisions, and increases the risk of having road traffic accidents. Sleep apnea may also cause high blood pressure; put strain on your cardiac system. It can lead to stroke, heart disease and heart failure.
OSA patients often snore loudly and keep their bed partners awake and frustrated. Social problems like marital discourse and divorce are not uncommon in OSA patients. These patients are poor performers in Sex life.
Who are more prone to have OSA?
If you’re overweight you’re more likely to snore. This is thought to be due to the excess fat around your neck. This makes your airways more likely to collapse.
Alcohol causes your muscles to relax more than usual during a normal night’s sleep so you are more likely to snore. It also irritates the nasal lining which can make breathing more difficult.
Sedatives, like alcohol, make your body’s muscles relax more than usual, causing you to snore. If you’re worried about how a sedative is affecting your sleep, talk to your GP about it. There may be a non-sedative alternative. Don’t stop taking prescribed medicines without talking to your doctor.
Smoking cigarettes causes inflammation and irritation to your nasal passage and throat, making snoring more likely. Even passive smoking can make snoring worse.
If you suffer from allergies you are likely to have sneezing, a blocked, itchy and runny nose.
Diagnosing OSAÂ Polysomnogram (PSG)
These are sleep labs where you are monitored while you sleep, to help diagnose sleeping disorders. The test monitors things such as your heart rate, brain waves, and the amount of oxygen in your blood, whether or not you are snoring while you sleep, or if you\’re breathing is interrupted. With this information he or she can find out if you have sleep apnea.
Life style changes to reduce weight avoid alcohol, stop smoking, Yoga etc.Â CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) and NPAP (Nasal Positive Airway Pressure) â€“ can be useful, but very cumbersome to wear and sleep every night with it. It causes lot of discomfort, inconvenience and embarrassment.
LAUP/LAPT (see details on this website)Â CAUP- Coblation Assisted Yuvuloplasty using RF energy in a plasma field to break molecular bonds at cellular level causes little heat and less pain.
I’ve been doing laser surgery for snoring and sleep apnea patients since 1996. Over a thousand patients underwent the laser surgery since then with 70%-80% results.Â Then again, what other options these poor folks have?