Sleep apnea can be a dangerous problem, and the most common type is obstructive sleep apnea. This type of sleep apnea is characterized by the upper airway being blocked or obstructed while you are sleeping. The obstruction of the airway results in periods of time that you actually stop breathing for a few seconds while you are asleep. Both the upper airway or the nasal passages may be obstructed while you are sleeping causing the inability to breathe. A variety of things can cause this obstruction, such as enlarged tonsils, a larger than average tongue, extra tissue, or even your jaw structure. You can learn more about the side effects of sleep apnea by reading this article.
There are a variety of different symptoms of this type of sleep apnea; however, the most obvious one is being extremely tired during the day. Also, while you may not realize your breathing is being obstructed while you are sleeping, chances are that your partner may realize it. The following are a few other symptoms that are associated with obstructive sleep apnea:
• Gaining weight
• Waking up confused and disoriented
• Feelings of depression
• Feeling tired even after sleeping
• Sleeping restlessly
• Snoring or choking sounds while sleeping
• Waking up with a headache
• Sleep that is restless
• Having high blood pressure
• Personality changes
While you may not think that it is a very serious thing to stop breathing a few times while you are sleeping, in reality, obstructive sleep apnea is a very serious condition and should be taken seriously. This is a problem that can actually threaten your life, and there are a variety of other problems that you are at risk for if you have sleep apnea that is not treated. Some of those risks include having high blood pressure, having a stroke, heart attack, heartbeat that is irregular, increased incidents of accidents at work, and problems with relationships.
If you thing that you or someone you love may have sleep apnea, it is important that they are tested as soon as possible. There are a couple different types of tests that can be used to determine whether or not you have this problem. Some tests may require that you go to a sleep lab, while other tests can actually be done in your own home. Insurances cover these types of tests, and they are painless, so there is no excuse to put off having these tests done.
There are a variety of treatment options that can be explored once it is determine that you have obstructive sleep apnea. It is important though that you seek medical help if you are having any symptoms so they can diagnose you and begin treatment as soon as possible. You can get more informative guides on sleep apnea and how it affects you by clicking here.