Obstructive sleep apnea

 

If you snore during sleep, if you wake up with a headache most mornings, if you wake up with a dry mouth and throat, you may also have sleep apnea or shortness of breath during sleep, or shortness of breath. If you have sleep apnea, take it seriously and be sure to see a doctor for proper management and prevention of dangerous consequences of obstructive sleep apnea.

 

Obstructive sleep apnea will be fully explained in this article. Before discussing obstructive sleep apnea specifically, it is better to talk a little about sleep apnea and its division and types of sleep apnea.

If you feel tired and drowsy in the morning after waking up at night, If you are tired all day and cannot reach your tasks and activities with full consciousness, read on because you may also have sleep apnea and do not know.

 

What is sleep apnea?

Is sleep apnea a serious disorder?

What are the types of sleep apnea?

Symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea

Why does obstructive sleep apnea occur?

What are the muscles behind the throat?

Why does sleep apnea occur?

Who is most at risk for obstructive sleep apnea?

What are the side effects of sleep apnea if left untreated?

How is obstructive sleep apnea diagnosed?

How to treat obstructive sleep apnea?

 

 

What is sleep apnea?

Doctors use the term (apnea) to mean (shortness of breath). This term is actually derived from compound (a) plus (penne) which is a Greek phrase, pnea means to breathe in and out of air, and the “a” used at the beginning of the word means (absent), so consider apnea as equivalent to a pause in breathing.

 

Sleep apnea should be considered a very serious disorder. During sleep apnea, the patient's breathing is interrupted frequently and repeatedly during sleep and resumes breathing after a short break.

 

Is sleep apnea a serious disorder?

Yes, doctors consider sleep apnea to be a very serious disorder and consider it necessary to study and take appropriate treatment and corrective measures to prevent its consequences.

 

What are the types of sleep apnea?

  • Obstructive sleep apnea OSA:

In this type of sleep apnea, the cause of respiratory failure is outside the nervous system that controls breathing, that is, a cause outside the center of respiration control in the brainstem and brain.

Loose throat and throat muscles cause sleep apnea or obstructive sleep apnea.

 

The term peripheral apnea means that the cause of external apnea will be outside of the central nervous system, which means outside the skull and brainstem, doctors consider obstructive sleep apnea to be the most common type of apnea.

 

  • Central apnea CSA:

As the title suggests, the cause of a short respiratory arrest is inside the neural center of respiratory control, meaning that for whatever reason, the brain of a person with central sleep apnea does not send the right messages and signals to control the functioning of the respiratory system.

 

  • Mixed sleep apnea:

Compound sleep apnea is a combination of disorders in the transmission of respiratory signals from the brain to the respiratory system and spontaneous and frequent relaxation of the muscles in the throat.

 

Symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea

Doctors say that most of the clinical manifestations and symptoms in obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea are similar. The most important and main and most common symptoms in OSA and CSA are:

 

  • Snoring in a person with a loud voice that causes other people to sneeze and is frequently warned by others; Doctors believe that the prevalence of loud snoring in people with OSA is higher than in the central type.

 

  • Sometimes sleep apnea is observed by a roommate, spouse or partner.

 

  • A person with sleep apnea may suddenly fall asleep and sit up. This symptom is said to be more common in central sleep apnea.

 

  • Shortness of breath that wakes you up suddenly is more common in sleep apnea with central causes.

 

  • A person with obstructive sleep apnea wakes up in the morning with a headache most days. So chronic morning headaches may be followed by obstructive sleep apnea

 

  • A person with obstructive sleep apnea may complain of recurrent insomnia.

 

  • A person with obstructive sleep apnea often wakes up in the morning with a dry mouth and throat.

 

  • A person with obstructive sleep apnea is tired during the day and may be constantly napping.

 

  • A person with sleep apnea will need more sleep during the day due to insufficient and poor quality sleep at night.

 

  • A person with obstructive sleep apnea may experience premature and irritable sleep

 

  • A person with sleep apnea has a lack of concentration and in other words, disorders of concentration and attention.

 

Both obstructive sleep apnea and central apnea can cause the above symptoms, so it is necessary to see a doctor to differentiate and correctly diagnose the cause of the above symptoms.

Now that we have seen the most important manifestations of obstructive sleep apnea, let's take a look at the causes of sleep apnea.

 

Why does obstructive sleep apnea occur?

Obstructive sleep apnea is considered to be the most common type of sleep apnea.

But what causes this type of respiratory arrest?

We said that when the muscles in your throat relax for some reason, it sets the stage for obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA.

 

What are the muscles behind the throat?

The soft palate, which is actually the junction of the bony palate with the cross-section of your throat, is a triangle when you look in the mirror with your mouth wide open, the roof of your mouth is oozing. There are muscles around the throat and throat that act as support.

When the above muscles relax for any reason, they will fall on the airway.

Following this process, the sufferer cannot breathe enough and with good quality, so not enough air and oxygen reaches the lungs and the oxygen in the blood decreases and the oxygen supply to the body's cells will be insufficient.

 

Now the brain understands this danger and wakes up the affected person so that this narrowing and obstruction in the airways can be opened and the air can flow. It is interesting to note that most of the time the duration of this awakening will be so short that the sufferer will not notice waking up at all.

Most people with obstructive sleep apnea do not even realize that they have had very short pauses during sleep. During this process, the person snores or other sounds may be heard in the throat.

It is interesting to know that the process mentioned above is repeated over and over again during sleep, so that doctors say that a person can experience the above cycle five to thirty times per hour, so the affected person cannot enter the deep stage of sleep. It's really a deep sleep that takes the tiredness out of your body and mind, Without a deep sleep phase, you wake up tired and always tired and yawning during the day. Because a person with obstructive sleep apnea does not realize that he or she often wakes up, he or she thinks he or she is completely asleep.

 

Why does sleep apnea occur?

Signals and messages are sent from the brain to our respiratory system, which are responsible for controlling and coordinating the function of normal breathing. If for any reason there is a problem in the production, sending and receiving of these messages, sleep apnea occurs. People with CSA are more likely to wake up with shortness of breath than the OSA type, and the prevalence of insomnia or difficulty sleeping in this category is higher than the obstructive sleep apnea type.

 

Who is most at risk for obstructive sleep apnea?

Risk factors that make you susceptible to OSA include:

  • Obesity and overweight:

Doctors say fat masses in overweight people around the trachea, throat and back of the throat can put pressure on the airway.

If you are obese, know that you are four times more likely to have obstructive sleep apnea than people of the same age but fit.

But obesity will not be the only contributing factor for OSA because not all obstructive sleep apnea cases are obese.

 

  • Being a man is a risk factor for developing obstructive sleep apnea:

Men are twice as likely as women to have obstructive sleep apnea

In postmenopausal women or if they are overweight, the risk will increase

 

  • Family history of sleep apnea:

If your parent has OSA, you are also at risk

 

  • Age:

The risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea increases with age. In other words, most obstructive sleep apnea cases are older people.

 

  • Narrow air flow path:

A person may have congenitally narrow airways. In a group of people, large tonsils and adenoids can block the airways by applying pressure to the airways behind the throat, and trachea, especially in children it can block the airways and cause obstructive sleep apnea

 

  • Having a thick neck:

In men, a neck circumference greater than seventeen inches, equivalent to forty-three centimeters, and in women, a neck circumference greater than fifteen inches, equivalent to thirty-eight centimeters, will increase the risk of infection.nPeople with thick necks are said to have tighter airways and will be narrower as a result.

 

  • Respiratory problems :

Such as the presence of congestion in the nose, for example, due to the deviation of the nasal or alveolar septum or the presence of large polyps and etc.

 

  • Smoking and tobacco:

Smokers are three times more likely than non-smokers to develop obstructive sleep apnea. If smoking is stopped, the risk will be reduced. Inflammation of the ducts and accumulation of sputum and secretions in the throat and back of the throat in smokers will not be ineffective in causing shortness of breath.

 

  • Alcohol and sleeping pills:

These substances will reduce the strength of the muscles in the back of the throat.

 

  • People with heart failure

 

  • People with a history of stroke:

People with stroke are more likely to have central sleep apnea or peripheral sleep apnea.

 

  • Medicines:

Like opioids and methadone, especially in long-term use

 

What are the side effects of sleep apnea if left untreated?

  • sleep disorders
  • Attention and concentration disorders
  • Hypertension
  • Having very serious heart problems
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Excessive fatigue during the day and reduced useful daily function
  • Obesity and metabolic syndrome
  • Having type 2 diabetes
  • Hepatic complications
  • Bothering other family member at night due to snoring

 

People with obstructive sleep apnea are said to be more prone to unwanted side effects following medication and after surgery.

 

So if you or your loved ones suffer from the above symptoms, you should see a doctor as soon as possible.

Lack of proper treatment of obstructive sleep apnea will be associated with a significant increase in heart attacks

 

How is obstructive sleep apnea diagnosed?

The doctor will take an accurate history of you.

In the diagnostic and treatment centers of sleep disorders, sleep doctors are present and use the following method or a combination of the following methods, depending on your condition.

In some cases, your doctor will help with a series of simple home tests. These tests will be used to diagnose sleep apnea at home.

  • Count the number of breaths
  • Heart rate count
  • Oxygen level of blood flow

 

Your doctor will ask you to measure the items above during sleep at home. If you have sleep apnea, your arterial blood flow will drop.

Sometimes the doctor starts treatment without further tests. In some cases of sleep apnea, home screening methods cannot help diagnose sleep apnea, so in these cases you need to be admitted to a sleep clinic and use polysomnography.

  • You will be admitted to the clinic to have a full day and night check on your breathing rhythm. During this hospitalization, the function of other parts of the body will also be monitored during sleep.

 

  • Polysomnography:

At the Sleep Clinic, you live in a quiet environment so that you can be fully monitored during sleep.

Equipment will be attached to monitor your brain, heart and lung function, hand and foot movements, blood oxygen, and breathing patterns during sleep.

 

 

How to treat obstructive sleep apnea?

Your doctor will pay close attention to your symptoms to choose the right type of treatment. For mild obstructive sleep apnea, lifestyle changes are usually recommended, which will be often sufficient.

  • Lose weight and reach a balanced weight
  • Regular exercise
  • Sleeping on your side
  • Sleeping on your stomach
  • Quit sleeping on your back
  • Keep the nostrils open at night
  • Quit smoking
  • Quit alcohol under the supervision of a doctor
  • Withdrawal of drugs that cause respiratory arrest under the supervision of a physician.
  • Treatment of disorders of nasal structure
  • Treatment of respiratory allergies

However, if the severity of symptoms is moderate or high, in addition to the above remedies, other treatments are used.

  • Non-surgical treatments for obstructive sleep apnea:
  • Air pressure instruments and devices
  • A tool for generating continuous positive pressure in the air flow path
  • A tool for creating positive exhalation air pressure
  • Oral tools

 

  • Surgical treatments for obstructive sleep apnea:
  • Jaw surgeries to change the position of the jaw to reduce pressure on the airways
  • Implants
  • Surgery to remove excess tissue that puts pressure on the airways
  • Nasal polyp surgeries
  • Surgery to correct the nasal septum
  • Tonsillectomy or tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy
  • Weight loss surgeries
  • Tracheostomy or creating a new way for air to enter the trachea
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