Obstructed Breathing Affects Many People While They’re Sleeping

quiet sleepMany people snore when they sleep; however how many of them actually think it is serious? Snoring is a sign of obstructive breathing which can lead to increased daytime sleepiness and fatigue. An article from http://www.washingtonpost.com has offered several facts about snoring and sleep apnoea that you should know about.

  • In the United States, more than 40 percent of men and 28 percent of women between the ages of 50 and 70 experience obstructed breathing while asleep.

  • Obstructive sleep apnoea causes the muscles and tissues in the lower throat to collapse, blocking the flow of air to the lungs during sleep.

  • A person with obstructive sleep apnoea may stop breathing, typically for 20 to 25 seconds or for as long as two minutes. The amount of carbon dioxide in the blood rises, triggering an alarm in the brain that stirs the sleeper to resume breathing. That cycle can repeat itself dozens of times an hour throughout the night, preventing the sleeper from reaching the restorative stages of deep sleep. Upon awakening, he or she usually has no recollection of those events.

  • Overweight men are the most frequently affected because they tend to have a throat with bulkier soft tissue and fat deposits, but women and people of normal weight also develop sleep apnoea.

  • Proper diagnosis and treatment are vital, not only to improve sleep but also to avoid life-threatening consequences.

  • The combination of lost sleep and repeated bouts of oxygen deprivation promote the inflammation of artery walls. High blood pressure and inflammation, which can damage blood vessels, also boost the risk of a heart attack or stroke. This may also break down the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar, leading to Type 2 diabetes.

  • In an overnight sleep study, monitoring devices will record brain activity, heart rate and rhythm, breathing, and oxygen and carbon dioxide levels in the blood.

  • If a doctor diagnoses mild sleep apnoea, you may be able to try lifestyle changes first. Losing weight, quitting smoking, and stopping sedatives, tranquilizers and alcohol may be your first steps towards recovery.

  • Train yourself to sleep on your side by using pillows or by sewing a pocket on the back of your pajamas and inserting a tennis ball to keep you from rolling on your back.

  • The most effective treatment for sleep apnoea is using a continuous positive airway pressure machine, or CPAP, a breathing mask connected to an air pump that maintains enough pressure to prevent the airway from collapsing.

  • An alternative is an oral appliance that pushes the lower jaw forward or holds the tongue forward. It might not work as well as a CPAP device, which props open the airway deep into the throat, but it can be effective for people with mild or moderate sleep apnoea, or for those who can’t tolerate a mask.

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Image  Courtesy of artur84 / freedigitalphotos.net

Somnowell Inventor - Visiting Professor Simon Ash FDS MSc MOrth BDS

Prof. Ash is the inventor of the highly successful SOMNOWELL Chrome device for snoring and sleep apnoea.

The Somnowell Chrome is made to exacting standards in the Somnowell laboratory under the supervision of Visiting Professor Simon Ash. Prof. Ash and his master technicians create each Somnowell Chrome device using their wealth of experience and expertise.

Prof. Ash works at the forefront of his profession. He is a Consultant and Specialist Orthodontist with over 30 years clinical experience, with a special interest in sleep related breathing disorders, TMJD, and bruxism. He currently works in Harley Street London and two private hospitals in London as part of a multi-disciplinary team managing snoring and sleep apnoea, and is Visiting Professor of Orthodontics at the BPP University.