Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Sleep Apnoea: Is it Something You Should Be Wary About?

Sleep Apnoea
Sleep Apnoea
Unless it’s your significant other who keeps disrupting your sleep, most people regard snoring as no big a deal at all. However, that constant and loud sound may indicate something serious. A condition called sleep apnoea. Although it’s quite common, it is a serious disorder that affects your normal breathing pattern.
Sleep apnoea can be treated. However it is usually overlooked and misdiagnosed. That said, it’s rather vital to be able to identify the symptoms and distinguish the difference between snoring and sleep apnoea.
What is sleep apnoea?
Sleep apnoea is a common disorder that attacks your normal breathing while asleep. With this condition, there’s a cessation of breathing that usually lasts between 10 to 20 seconds. Your natural sleep rhythm is disrupted and as a result, makes you spend more time in light sleep rather than in deep and restorative mode.

What are the types of sleep apnoea?

  1. Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) - happens when the soft tissue in the back of your throat begins to relax and obstructs the airway, which then causes the very loud snoring. 
  2. Central sleep apnoea - occurs when part of the central nervous system fails to send signals to the muscles responsible for breathing. A person suffering from this condition doesn’t usually snore. 
  3. Complex sleep apnoea - happens when both obstructive sleep apnoea and central sleep apnoea is present. 

What are its signs and symptoms?
Identifying its signs and symptoms can be difficult since the most obvious ones only transpire when you’re sleeping. However, you can ask your partner to observe the way you sleep.
- Very loud snoring which is interrupted by episodes of gasps and pauses
- Excessive daytime drowsiness (falling asleep while engaged in a conversation or while driving)
- Morning headaches
- Irritability
- Forgetfulness
- Depression
- Decreased libido
- Mood changes
- Inability to concentrate
- Frequent urination at night

What are its causes and risk factors?
Sleep apnoea exempts no gender and age group. Anyone can be attacked by this particular disorder. However, you’re in greater risk if you are:
- Overweight
- A male
- A smoker
- Related to somebody who suffers the disorder
- Above the age of 65
What are its treatment options?
Several treatment alternatives are widely available at your disposal. In mild and moderate cases, lifestyle changes (e.g. weight loss and smoke cessation) and the use of mandibular advancement devices are of great help. In severe cases, nasal continuous positive airway (CPAP) is recommended by most health care professionals.
Sleep apnoea really affects the quality of your sleep and health. But with proper treatment, you get to control its symptoms, get your sleeping habit back to normal and begin to feel refreshed and energised again every day.

About Havas ENT Clinic:
Havas ENT Clinic:  is a leading Australian ear nose and throat specialist in Sydney for over 20 years and have some of the best specialists on board.

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