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Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a common, serious sleep disorder that causes you to stop breathing during sleep. OSA happens when the throat and upper airway collapse while asleep. It is often a familial disorder with excess tissue and the muscles inside the throat relaxing as you sleep. This blocks the airway, keeping air from getting into the lungs. Oxygen levels in the body drop, and sleep is disrupted. This can happen dozens or even hundreds of times a night! Everyone who snores has OSA, but one in four cases may not snore at all. The snoring sound is made as the flow of air causes tissue in the back of the throat to vibrate. Snoring and OSA can happen when you breathe through the nose or the mouth, or both.

Symptoms:

  • Snoring
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Poor memory
  • Loss of concentration
  • Muscle aches
  • Headache
  • Night sweats

OSA is a very serious sleep disorder. Patients with OSA suffer from fragmented sleep and may develop cardiovascular abnormalities because of repetitive cycles of blocked breathing and arousals (short waking which helps the breathing resume).

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