How We Can Help With Your Sleep Apnea Symptoms
Sleep apnea doesn't have to affect the quality of your life. Dr. Richard Nass, your Manhattan, NY ear, nose and throat doctor, explains how he can help you find relief for your symptoms.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea happens due to an airflow disruption. It can occur if your throat muscles relax and close when you sleep or if your tongue falls back into your airway during the night. The problem can also be caused by structural abnormalities in your nose, mouth or throat that impede normal airflow.
Why is sleep apnea a problem?
Sleep apnea causes you to stop breathing multiple times during the night for periods of 10 seconds or longer. Not surprisingly, many people who have the condition feel tired during the day and have trouble concentrating. Fatigue isn't the only issue when you have sleep apnea. Breathing pauses can raise your risk of heart attack, stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure. Snoring, which often occurs when you have sleep apnea, not only disrupts your sleep but also makes it difficult for the people who live with you to sleep.
How is sleep apnea treated in Manhattan?
If a sleep study reveals that you have sleep apnea, Dr. Nass may recommend one of these treatments or lifestyle modifications:
- Weight Loss: If you're overweight, losing a few pounds can help. Fat tends to form around your airway when you're overweight, which can contribute to sleep apnea.
- Avoiding Cigarettes and Alcohol: Alcohol causes the muscles in your airway to relax, while smoking causes them to swell.
- Dental Appliances: Special dental appliances, worn at night, move your jaw forward and prevent your tongue from falling back into your airway.
- CPAP Machine: Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines have helped many people overcome sleep apnea. When you sleep, you'll wear a special mask that forces a steady stream of air into your airway, preventing it from collapsing.
- Surgery: If your problem is caused by a structural abnormality, surgery may be recommended to ease your sleep apnea symptoms.