Do you snore loudly? What about waking up feeling tired, even on a somewhat restful night?
You could be suffering from sleep apnea. Sleep apnea occurs when there is an obstruction in the airways, causing one to start and stop breathing while asleep.
Hence, the condition can be fatal. Whereas sleep apnea occurs at any age, it gets worse with age.
Then, what can you do if you are diagnosed with sleep apnea? And, what is the role of a sleep apnea specialist in your treatment?
Here is a quick guide:
Types of Sleep Apnea
There are three main types of sleep apnea which are listed below.
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Central sleep apnea
- Complex sleep apnea
The first is obstructive sleep apnea, which happens to be the most common type.
It occurs when the throat muscles relax as we sleep.
The second, central sleep apnea ensues when there is a breakdown of communication between the brain and the muscles responsible for breathing.
Finally, complex sleep apnea syndrome occurs as a combination of obstructive and central sleep apnea.
The Dangers of Sleep Apnea
Almost 30 million people in the US suffer from sleep apnea. When it occurs in children, it is due to adenoids or tonsillitis.
Still, this condition can go unnoticed for years. But, did you know that an untreated patient can develop type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and stroke?
Hence, if you or your loved ones are chronic snorers, now it the best time to get checked by a sleep disorder specialist.
The Sleep Apnea Doctors
The sleep apnea specialist is one of the doctors that can diagnose and treat sleep apnea.
Other doctors include an ENT doctor, a neurologist, a psychiatrist, a dentist, and a surgeon.
On a typical day, the sleep disorder specialist must have board-certified qualifications to handle all sleep-related disorders.
These include sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, insomnia, and narcolepsy.
A typical clinic like the Sleep Specialist Doctors at Apache Junction, the sleep apnea doctors will start by asking a series of questions to determine the patient’s sleeping pattern.
Based on the answers given, the doctor will then perform a polysomnogram. It is a diagnostic test that monitors brain activity when you sleep.
After diagnosis, the doctor has to prescribe the best treatment possible. Hence, he may decide to initiate behavioral therapy like a lifestyle change and talk therapy.
For it is possible to have sleep apnea due to the environment or partner with whom one shares a bed.
Still, there are instances where the doctor has to prescribe medication, devices and dental appliances.
All these gadgets and drugs work on the respiratory muscles, allowing the patients to breathe normally again.
Once the doctor gives you a treatment plan for your sleep apnea, do the following to ensure you get better faster: –
• Lose weight. Obesity is partly responsible for the narrow air passages in your respiratory system.
• Perform relaxation techniques like yoga and meditation. These techniques increase your energy levels, hence your oxygen circulation in the body.
• Sleep in the right position. Choose between your back, side or stomach position, depending on the most comfortable style. Then, use the right mattress and pillow to complement your position.
• Have a humidifier in your bedroom. It helps to add moisture to your room. In turn, your airways will remain open, with no irritation.
Sleep apnea is a dangerous condition that requires prompt attention.
Yet, with a reliable sleep apnea professional, anyone can overcome this condition. Hence, ask your primary caregiver to recommend a sleep apnea doctor near you.
Then, make lifestyle changes to ensure the treatment succeeds.