and Sleep Apnea
is caused by partial blockage of the air passages during sleep.
Turbulent airflow causes vibrations of the palate and uvula leading
to excessive noise. Snoring may be associated with sleep apnea.
Apnea, or cessation of breathing, may occur if the breathing passages
become completely occluded. Snoring alone, while not considered
normal, is not life threatening. However, it may significantly
affect the quality of life of other family members, particularly
the snorer’s spouse. Most persons who snore, but don’t
have apnea, have difficulty breathing through their noses or have
excessively long palates or uvulas. Correction of these problems
can often be done in the office with laser surgery or with a new
technique involving injections of the palate, called the Pillar
Apnea, unlike snoring alone, is a potentially life-threatening
condition. Chronic obstruction of the air passages leads to extra
stress on the heart and lungs and can cause permanent changes
to their structure. Persons with sleep apnea are more likely to
develop hypertension and fatal arrhythmias.
is often difficult to distinguish between snoring alone and snoring
with associated sleep apnea. Individuals with sleep apnea usually
awaken after a full night’s sleep feeling unrested and tired.
Morning headaches are common. Frequent napping during the day
diagnose sleep apnea, an individual must undergo a sleep study,
which involves overnight monitoring. The test allows for quantification
of the severity of the apnea and allows your physician to choose
a treatment plan which is best for you.
treatment of sleep apnea is varied. Sometimes weight loss alone
is sufficient. Continuous positive airway pressure or CPAP is
the main-stay of treatment for sleep apnea. This device is worn
at night and delivers a continuous stream of air at a set pressure
to the nose and mouth to keep the airway open. When worn, the
machine is nearly 100% successful in the treatment of sleep apnea.
Surgical treatments for sleep apnea also exist depending on the
area felt to be responsible for the
obstruction. Surgical management may be as simple as an outpatient
is important to remember that no one treatment for sleep apnea
works for everyone. We come in all shapes and sizes with varied
anatomy and disease. It is imperative to seek treatment with a
physician well versed in all treatments. Dr. Lee and
Jordan provide an honest evidence based approach to sleep apnea
and snoring treatment.