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All Posts in Category: General

Treatments for Sleep Apnea: Mechanical

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Sleep apnea is a chronic condition in which breathing is interrupted during sleep. The most common type, obstructive sleep apnea, occurs when soft tissue in the throat blocks the airway, resulting in temporary breathing cessation. Sleep apnea can range from moderate (fewer than five instances of stopped breathing each hour) to severe (thirty or more breath stoppages in an hour), and can often have negative effects on health and quality of life, including daytime fatigue and snoring. Left untreated, sleep apnea can have serious health consequences, including an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other problems.

Although anyone can suffer from sleep apnea, there are certain genetic and lifestyle factors that can increase someone’s risk of having the disorder. Certain factors, such as gender and ethnic background (men, as well as people of Hispanic and African American origin, are more likely to have sleep apnea) cannot be controlled. However, other factors, such as smoking and obesity, can often be ameliorated or eliminated through lifestyle changes. Smoking is one of the biggest risk factors for sleep apnea. Quitting smoking can have a dramatic impact on sleep apnea, and can reduce or eliminate symptoms. Similarly, overweight individuals are at increased risk for sleep apnea. Losing weight can be tremendously helpful in controlling or eradicating the problem.

For some people, lifestyle changes are not enough to eliminate sleep apnea. For these individuals, mechanical means, such as special mouth appliances designed to be worn during sleep, special pillows, or CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) devices, can all be helpful in relieving symptoms of sleep apnea. Specially designed mouth guards can help to position the jaw in such a way as to keep the airway open. Wedge-shaped foam pillows can position the sleeper so that their upper body is elevated, which is helpful in eliminating airway obstruction. For people with more severe sleep apnea, a CPAP device works by blowing a continuous stream of pressurized air through a mask during sleep, forcing the airway open and preventing dangerous breath stoppages. Because of the risks posed by untreated sleep apnea, it’s important for sufferers to explore treatment options to find one that works for them.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care for sleeping problems. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

General Home Care New York

 

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Sleep Apnea Heart Issues

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Sleep apnea is a common condition that affects many Americans from all walks of life. Although it is frequently associated with certain populations (it is more prevalent in men, smokers, and overweight individuals, as well as within certain ethnic groups) it can affect anyone. Sleep apnea involves temporary cessation of breathing during sleep, and can range from mild (fewer than five instances every hour) to severe (more than thirty instances within an hour). Although many people associate sleep apnea with insomnia and snoring, when left untreated, it can have even more serious consequences – including an increased risk of heart problems.

Although no causal link between sleep apnea and heart disease has been established, studies have shown a correlation between the disorder and sudden cardiac arrest, arrhythmias, and other heart problems. Researchers have speculated that the changes in oxygen saturation in the blood caused by periodic stoppages in breathing throughout the night interfere with normal electrical patterns in the heart, increasing the risk of dangerous irregularities in rhythm that can lead to heart attack. Similarly, sleep apnea is associated with high blood pressure; periodic waking or changes in the sleep cycle are often accompanied by a spike in blood pressure, due to activation of the sympathetic nervous system. This in turn can put more stress on the heart.

There are other ways in which sleep apnea may be correlated with heart disease. Obesity is a strong risk factor for both sleep apnea and heart disease; addressing obesity may help to combat both problems at once. Although treating sleep apnea may not completely eliminate the risk of sudden cardiac arrest, heart failure, and other heart problems, addressing the disorder is an important step toward better heart health. Detecting and treating sleep apnea as early as possible may help to prevent or ameliorate potentially serious conditions like heart disease.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care for sleeping problems. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

General Home Care New York

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Sleep Apnea Stroke

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Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects many Americans from all walks of life. Although it is more prevalent among certain segments of the population (men, smokers, overweight individuals, and those of Hispanic or African American descent tend to be more susceptible to the disorder), anyone can suffer from sleep apnea. In contrast to many other sleep disorders, which may cause insomnia or difficulty staying asleep, sleep apnea causes repeated waking or changes in sleep due to episodes of breathing cessation. People with obstructive sleep apnea (the most common form) experience interruptions in breathing due to blockages of the airway, whereas people with central sleep apnea (a rarer form of the condition) stop breathing temporarily because of signaling errors in areas of the brain that control breathing.

Although many people think of snoring as sleep apnea’s characteristic symptom, it can actually have much more serious consequences. Snoring is an annoyance – especially for bed partners of sleep apnea sufferers – but it is by no means the only, or the most serious, outcome of the disorder. In fact, although they are often associated, not everyone with sleep apnea will experience snoring. A range of potentially serious health problems can result from untreated sleep apnea, however, including an increased risk of stroke.

People with sleep apnea are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease, which in turn elevates the risk of stroke. Repeated interruptions in sleep during the night can trigger a nervous system response that causes blood pressure to soar. People of all ages who have sleep apnea are at an increased risk for stroke. However, in older adults, for whom the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke is already higher, the association between untreated sleep apnea and stroke is of particular concern. Taking steps to detect sleep apnea early, and to begin treatment as soon as possible, is essential in mediating the risk of stroke and other health problems associated with the condition.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care for sleeping problems. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

General Home Care New York

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Sleep Apnea Effects on Blood Pressure

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Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that effects many Americans from all walks of life. Although it is more prevalent among certain segments of the population (men, smokers, overweight individuals, and those of Hispanic or African American descent tend to be more susceptible to the disorder), anyone can suffer from sleep apnea. In contrast to many other sleep disorders, which may cause insomnia or difficulty staying asleep, sleep apnea causes repeated waking or changes in sleep due to episodes of breathing cessation. People with obstructive sleep apnea (the most common form) experience interruptions in breathing due to blockages of the airway, whereas people with central sleep apnea (a rarer form of the condition) stop breathing temporarily because of signaling errors in areas of the brain that control breathing.

Although many people think of snoring as sleep apnea’s characteristic symptom, it can actually have much more serious consequences. Snoring is an annoyance – especially for bed partners of sleep apnea sufferers – but it is by no means the only, or the most serious, outcome of the disorder. In fact, although they are often associated, not everyone with sleep apnea will experience snoring. A range of potentially serious health problems can result from untreated sleep apnea, however, including an increased risk of stroke.

People with sleep apnea are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease, which in turn elevates the risk of stroke. Repeated interruptions in sleep during the night can trigger a nervous system response that causes blood pressure to soar. People of all ages who have sleep apnea are at an increased risk for stroke. However, in older adults, for whom the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke is already higher, the association between untreated sleep apnea and stroke is of particular concern. Taking steps to detect sleep apnea early, and to begin treatment as soon as possible, is essential in mediating the risk of stroke and other health problems associated with the condition.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care for sleeping problems. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

General Home Care New York

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Sleep Disturbance of Sleep Apnea

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Sleep apnea is a very common disorder that affects tens of millions of Americans. It is most common among men and people over the age of 40, as well as overweight individuals and people of African American or Hispanic origin. However, anyone, regardless of age, gender, race, or body type, can suffer from sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is often first detected when a bed partner notices snoring on the part of the affected individual. However, snoring does not always accompany sleep apnea; even someone who never snores can have the condition.

Sleep apnea is characterized by repeated interruptions in normal breathing during sleep. This can be caused by soft tissue blocking the airway (obstructive sleep apnea), by abnormal signaling in the parts of the brain that control the muscles used for breathing (central sleep apnea), or by a combination of both (mixed sleep apnea). When breathing stops or becomes too shallow, a brief period of wakefulness, or a shift from deep to light sleep, often occurs. Although sleep apnea sufferers may not remember waking during the night, these changes in normal sleep patterns can have a profound impact on their wellbeing. Poor sleep often results in daytime fatigue, which can lead to emotional problems such as irritability and depression, increase the risk of on-the-job or automobile accidents, and cause problems with memory and concentration.

In addition to the primary effects of poor sleep on it sufferers, chronic sleep apnea can have long-term health implications. Ailments such as stroke and heart disease, as well as diabetes and high blood pressure, are associated with untreated sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can also worsen underlying medical conditions, and result in a lower quality of life for its sufferers. For these reasons, it is essential for people who suspect they may have sleep apnea to be proactive about pursuing treatment.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care for sleeping problems. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

General Home Care New York

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