Boonah and Kalbar Medical Centres

Boonah and Kalbar Medical Centres

Sleep Apnoea

Sleep apnea is a common disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. It is characterized by pauses or shallow breathing during sleep, which can lead to interruptions in oxygen supply to the brain and body. There are two main types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which occurs when the airway becomes blocked during sleep, and central sleep apnea (CSA), which occurs when the brain fails to send signals to the muscles that control breathing.

Symptoms of sleep apnea may include loud snoring, gasping or choking sounds during sleep, frequent awakenings throughout the night, morning headaches, excessive daytime sleepiness, and difficulty concentrating or remembering things. Untreated sleep apnea can lead to serious health complications, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and depression.

Diagnosis of sleep apnea typically involves an overnight sleep study, known as polysomnography, which measures various physiological parameters during sleep, including brain activity, eye movement, muscle tone, respiratory rate, oxygen saturation, and heart rate. Treatment options for sleep apnea may include lifestyle changes, such as weight loss, positional therapy, or avoiding alcohol and sedatives before bedtime; use of a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to keep the airway open during sleep; oral appliance therapy to reposition the tongue or lower jaw; or surgery to remove excess tissue from the airway.

In summary, sleep apnea is a potentially serious disorder that can lead to various health complications if left untreated. Diagnosis typically involves an overnight sleep study, and treatment may include lifestyle changes, use of a CPAP machine, oral appliance therapy, or surgery. If you suspect that you may have sleep apnea, it's important to consult with a healthcare provider for proper evaluation and management.

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