So many people snore at night that it has become easy for people to disregard the fact that snoring is a sign of an underlying condition that can be quite serious. In fact, so many people snore that the chances are very good that you find the majority of people in your life actually do snore. Still, this does not mean snoring is something that you should brush off as a minor issue if you find out that you also snore in your sleep. An interesting piece of information that may send you straight into a doctors chair is that snoring is one of the biggest signs that you may be suffering from a condition called sleep apnea. This article will educate you on sleep apnea and explain to you how your doctor can treat you for the condition:
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a serious health condition that causes a person suffering from it to start and stop breathing during their sleep. When you snore, it is caused by the tissues in your throat relaxing so much that it causes them to partially block your airway while you are breathing. This is what makes the snoring sound. It is similar to when you fill a balloon with air and then squeeze the hole while the air comes out; it also makes a similar vibrating sound. Since your throat is closing on you, you can actually stop breathing altogether while you are sleeping. This is what makes sleep apnea such a serious health concern! People with sleep apnea are at a greater risk of cardiac death.
Another major indicator that you may be suffering from sleep apnea is daytime drowsiness. This is due to the fact that your regular sleep pattern is being interrupted by these bouts of breathing issues. Also, you won't be getting a consistent amount of airflow during the night. Daytime sleepiness in and of itself can also be extremely problematic. Sleepiness can cause you to feel confused, suffer from temporary memory loss and make all your daily tasks and chores harder for you to get through.
What can be done about sleep apnea?
You can use a mouth guard that will hold your mouth in a specific position while you sleep to avoid the throat issue. You can also get a CPAP machine that ensures you are getting air the entire time you sleep. Contact a healthcare center for help.