Unfortunately, numerous people nowadays suffer from sleep disturbances, night terrors, insomnia, or 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.There are two types of sleep apnea:
-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.
Am I at Risk for Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea can affect anyone at any age, even children. Risk factors for sleep apnea include:
-Being over age 40
-Having a large neck size (17 inches or greater 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
-Gastroesophageal reflux, or GERD
-Nasal obstruction due to a deviated septum, allergies, or sinus problems