Sometimes snoring is just snoring. Sometimes snoring is the side effect of a much serious condition commonly known as sleep apnea. At Vitality Medical we’ve seen a significant rise in the use of CPAP machines. But when local radio station KSL A.M. 1160 came to ask us about it, we figured it was time to blog about it. (you can listen to the interview by clicking here)
Your doctor is the only one who can diagnose sleep apnea but if you are constantly fatigued despite regular sleep, you may want to meet with the doc and discuss it. Other side effects of sleep apnea are morning headaches, restless sleep, and sleepiness during the daytime. Even if a person gets regular uninterrupted sleep, they could still suffer from sleep apnea. Left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, or premature death. In The Journal of Neuroscience Letters [June 2008] researchers revealed that people with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) show tissue loss in brain regions that help store memory, linking OSA with memory loss. One medical investigator hypothesized that repeated drops in oxygen lead to the brain injury
Former NFL football great Reggie White was known to suffer from aleep apnea, may have contributed to his death. If apnea can take down a Hall of Fame defensive end like White, it should not be ignored.
What is Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep. Each pause is called an apnea. Each apnea lasts long enough so that one or more breaths are missed. When this occurs repeatedly throughout sleep, you have sleep apnea.
There are two types of sleep apnea which are determined by the cause of the apnea.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is the most common category of sleep-disordered breathing, according to Wikipedia. Muscles relax during sleep and since the throat is composed of soft collapsible walls, without the muscles doing their work the throat collapses and breathing is cut off.
Central Sleep Apnea (CSA) is less common. With CSA the brain doesn’t signal a normal breathing pattern to the body. Blood levels of carbon dioxide, and the neurological feedback mechanism that monitors it does not react quickly enough to maintain an even respiratory rate, with the entire system cycling between apnea and hyperpnea, even during wakefulness.
What is the Treatment?
Anyone who believes they may be suffering from sleep apnea should confer with their doctor. One of the most common treatment options for the condition of obstructive sleep apnea is a CPAP machine. CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure.
CPAP treatment consists of three parts: the CPAP Compressor, oxygen tubing and a special CPAP mask. The CPAP machine is essentially a quiet air compressor that continually forces air thorough the tubing to the mask. The continuous air pressure forces the airway to remain open, which allows for normal breathing for the entire night.
The CPAP machine delivers a steady stream of compressed air via a hose to the mask. This keeps the airway open with air pressure so that unobstructed breathing becomes possible. Because a side benefit is a marked reduction of the extremely loud snoring that sometimes accompanies sleep apnea.
The CPAP mask is different from other Oxygen Masks. Typically, a CPAP mask is a noise only mask. Although these masks may appear awkward, they have gone a long way toward helping people with OSA get the rest they need.
Whether you suffer from the symptoms of Sleep Apnea or are concerned about a family who suffers, remember at Vitality Medical we are committed to providing you the medical equipment that your doctor prescribes—at a great value!
For 8 years, at Vitality Medical, we have delivered on our promise to sell top quality medical supplies at some of the best prices on the Web.