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Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea treatment

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that is symptomized by the stop and start of breathing. Sleep apnea can be a nuisance to the sleeper and those around him or her, as it can result in excessive snoring and restlessness. Even more, untreated sleep apnea can be fatal. That's why it's so important to work closely with a doctor to diagnose your condition and determine the best sleep apnea treatment for you.

Sometimes, you can cure your sleep apnea with something as simple as losing weight or quitting smoking. Sleep apnea may also be attributed to another underlying medical condition that can be treated. However, more serious cases will need to be treated through a sleep apnea clinic, where your condition can be monitored and the proper sleep apnea equipment, or even surgery, can be used to help.

Types of sleep apnea

There are two types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is the more common form, which is the result of the throat muscles relaxing while the patient sleeps. Central sleep apnea is the more dangerous form, which occurs when there is an interruption between the brain's signals and breathing muscles. In central sleep apnea, breathing is not merely obstructed, it is completely stopped. Some patients may find they have a combination of both types.

Sleep apnea equipment

For those who aren't able to treat their sleep apnea with healthy lifestyle changes, sleep apnea equipment may be a good alternative to surgery. Most types of sleep apnea equipment work to keep airways open and are best used on obstructive sleep apnea. These devices may use air pressure or oral equipment to prevent obstruction of air. Oral devices tend to hold the jaw forward while the patient sleeps, in order to prevent the relaxing of throat muscles.

Sleep apnea clinic

More severe cases of sleep apnea, and particularly in patients suffering from central sleep apnea, should be monitored over a long period of time by specialists at a sleep apnea clinic. Specialists at a clinic are able to track your condition to make sure that all possible avenues have been explored before exposing a patient to surgery.

There are several different surgery options available to sleep apnea patients, and the kind that's best for your condition will depend on your symptoms and your type of apnea. Some surgeries focus on opening the airway, while others adjust jaw positioning, and some focus on nasal passages.

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