Do you or your child snore? Are you still tired after a good night's rest? Do you often wake gasping for air or coughing? If so, you may have sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea, also known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (or OSA), is a potentially life-threatening condition that repeatedly causes breathing to stop and start throughout your sleep cycle.
Sleep apnea affects over 30 million Americans, and millions are prediposed to developing sleep apnea due to risk factors. ENT Carolina can help.
During normal sleep, your throat muscles relax. If your throat is crowded due to obesity or other physicial attributes, your airway can collapse during sleep and block your airflow. When airflow stops, your bloood oxygen levels drop, which cause your brain to wake up.
When you have sleep apnea, this cycle may continue throughout the night while you have no idea it is happening!
Common sleep apnea warning signs:
Some people are more prone to sleep apnea due to physiological or medical issues. These include:
Left undiagnosed, severe sleep apnea can increase your risk of the following medical conditions:
For pediatric patients, the diagnosis of sleep-disordered breathing is made by taking a thorough medical history and physical examination.
For most adults and some pediatric cases, a sleep study can provide accurate measurements and provide the degree of apnea.
A polysomnograpgy sleep study measures your heart rate, brain waves, chest movement, airflow, and oxygen levels while you sleep, as well as eye and leg movements.
In cases when non-invasive treatments fail, a surgical solution might be necessary.