You may not realize it, but breathing is one of the most essential functions that we complete repeatedly every day. Breath enables the body to acquire oxygen while expelling carbon dioxide, which in turn allows for the body to continue living. The problem is that not all breaths are deep, relaxing and smooth. These breaths may be unable to deliver the oxygen the body and brain need to continue functioning.
When you have trouble while sleeping, this condition is called sleep apnea. It is one of the most common sleeping disorders that can interrupt both your sleep and the sleep of anyone in the room with you.
Sleep apnea occurs when you have trouble breathing while trying to sleep. You may have shallow breaths or breaths that are not smooth and deep like they should be. When this condition occurs, your sleep is generally affected. Your brain may be unable to relax adequately to enable you to enter REM sleep, which in turn means that you may wake up feeling just as tired as you did when you went to sleep.
What are the Causes?
The causes of sleep apnea can be numerous. You may have sleep apnea as the result of:
- A bacterial or viral infection
- Congenital defects in the nose, throat or related tissues
- Obstructions caused by obesity and other weight-related problems
- Failure of the throat muscles to relax during sleep
- The use of alcohol, sedatives or tranquilizers
Other causes exist when it comes to sleep apnea. This is because of the complex nature of how the throat works during sleep. Most people are unaware that they experience sleep apnea. There is no blood test to determine if a person is affected by this condition, nor do any conclusive symptoms present themselves.
How Can Sleep Apnea Affect Your Life?
Just as there are many reasons as to why sleep apnea may develop, there are many ways that it can affect your life. The most prominent and common way is that it can affect your feeling of rest. You may feel significantly more tired after resting due to the interruptions that sleep apnea can cause when the body enters the most restful portions of sleep. Memory problems, the loss of mental acuity and an increase of driving-related accidents are just some of the further symptoms this lack of rest can cause.
Another way it can affect your life is by putting you at a heightened risk for systemic conditions and disease. Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, obesity, kidney failure and metabolic disorders are just a few of the problems sleep apnea can put you at a heightened risk of developing.
Contact Us Today
If you or someone you know suffers from sleep apnea, then seeking treatment is the best course of action. The problems that it can cause are too grave to ignore. Schedule an appointment at Innovative Medicine in Lafayette to have your sleep apnea diagnosed. We can assess the causes, and use our experience to recommend the most successful methods for treating your condition. Contact us today to book your consultation.