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Sleep Apnea: What is it?

Rapidly becoming one of the significant health concerns of the world, sleep apnea is not something you should consider trivial. It is linked to countless health problems already, and the list is continuously expanding. In case it is something you are worried about or struggles with, it is highly recommended to go to places like the Western Slope Sleep Center for guidance. Making simple lifestyle changes can usually treat the disorder.

What is sleep apnea?

A severe disorder, sleep apnea occurs when the breathing gets obstructed during sleep. A lack of oxygen caused when the airways are restricted affects the entire body, hampering its normal functions. It also prevents the body from self-repair. Persons who have untreated sleep apnea can stop breathing repeatedly during the night.

Kind of Sleep Apnea

There are two kinds of

  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA): It’s the most common form of the problem; it causes a blockage of the airway. This blockage results when the soft tissue found at the back of the throat collapses while sleeping.
  • Central Sleep Apnea: In this form of Apnea, the throat in itself isn’t block. The problem arises because the brain is unable to signal the muscles to breathe, which is usually a result of instability in the respiratory control centre.

Who is affected by Sleep Apnea?

Sleep Apnea is a widespread disorder that can affect virtually anyone. Everyone, no matter their age (even children) can face the problem, although there are some people at higher risk than others.

These include:

  • Males are more likely to develop it over females.
  • Being overweight increases the chance of developing it.
  • Although it can affect people of any age, it is common in people over 40.
  • If a person has nasal obstruction due to deviated septum, allergies or sinus problems, they have a higher probability of getting sleep apnea.
  • The disease can be hereditary, which is why having a family history makes a person higher risk.
  • Having a large tongue, or a bigger neck girth.

What are its symptoms?

The most common symptom is loud snoring. The other symptoms include:

  • Increased drowsiness during the day.
  • Waking up gasping or choking for air.
  • Swollen legs.
  • Dry mouth or sore throat in the mornings.
  • Headaches
  • Being unable to concentrate
  • Mood Swings
  • Depression


Obstructive sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder. It can affect anyone, though some people have a higher chance of getting it. It is treated by simple lifestyle changes, for which it is beneficial that the patient receives help from a clinic.

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