Ap­nea can be a se­ri­ous sleep disor­der

The Hamilton Spectator - - HEALTH - MAYO CLINIC NEWS NET­WORK

Sleep ap­nea is a po­ten­tially se­ri­ous sleep disor­der in which breath­ing re­peat­edly stops and starts. You may have sleep ap­nea if you snore loudly, and you feel tired even af­ter a full night’s sleep.

The main types of sleep ap­nea are:

• Ob­struc­tive sleep ap­nea, the more com­mon form that oc­curs when throat mus­cles re­lax.

• Cen­tral sleep ap­nea, which oc­curs when your brain doesn’t send proper sig­nals to the mus­cles that con­trol breath­ing.

• Com­plex sleep ap­nea syn­drome, also known as treat­ment-emer­gent cen­tral sleep ap­nea, oc­curs when some­one has both ob­struc­tive sleep ap­nea and cen­tral sleep ap­nea.

The signs and symp­toms of ob­struc­tive and cen­tral sleep ap­neas over­lap, some­times mak­ing the type of sleep ap­nea more dif­fi­cult to de­ter­mine.

The most com­mon signs and symp­toms of ob­struc­tive and cen­tral sleep ap­neas in­clude:

• Loud snor­ing, which is usu­ally more prom­i­nent in ob­struc­tive sleep ap­nea

• Episodes of breath­ing ces­sa­tion dur­ing sleep wit­nessed by an­other per­son

• Abrupt awak­en­ings ac­com­pa­nied by short­ness of breath, which more likely in­di­cates cen­tral sleep ap­nea

• Awak­en­ing with a dry mouth or sore throat • Morn­ing headache • Dif­fi­culty stay­ing asleep (in­som­nia)

• Ex­ces­sive day­time sleepi­ness (hy­per­som­nia) • At­ten­tion prob­lems • Ir­ri­tabil­ity Con­sult a med­i­cal pro­fes­sional if you ex­pe­ri­ence, or if your part­ner no­tices, the fol­low­ing:

• Snor­ing loud enough to dis­turb the sleep of oth­ers or your­self

• Short­ness of breath, gasp­ing for air or chok­ing that awak­ens you from sleep

• In­ter­mit­tent pauses in your breath­ing dur­ing sleep

• Ex­ces­sive day­time drowsi­ness, which may cause you to fall asleep while you’re work­ing, watch­ing tele­vi­sion or even driv­ing

Many peo­ple don’t think of snor­ing as a sign of some­thing po­ten­tially se­ri­ous, and not ev­ery­one who has sleep ap­nea snores. But be sure to talk to your doc­tor if you ex­pe­ri­ence loud snor­ing, es­pe­cially snor­ing that’s punc­tu­ated by pe­ri­ods of si­lence.

Ask your doc­tor about any sleep prob­lem that leaves you chron­i­cally fa­tigued, sleepy and ir­ri­ta­ble. Ex­ces­sive day­time drowsi­ness (hy­per­som­nia) may be due to sleep ap­nea or to other disorders, such as nar­colepsy.

Treat­ment can ease your symp­toms and may help pre­vent heart prob­lems and other com­pli­ca­tions.

DREAM­STIME

The signs and symp­toms of ob­struc­tive and cen­tral sleep ap­neas over­lap, some­times mak­ing the type of sleep ap­nea more dif­fi­cult to de­ter­mine.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.