09 Jun Types of Sleep Apnea
Types of sleep apnea can differ from patient, which is why it is important to get a diagnosed and treated. As we all know, a good night sleep does more than just getting you rested and ready for the next day, it is necessary for a healthy body and mind. We have all run into those days when we don’t get enough sleep and they are not pretty. What happens when there is a medical reason for you not getting a good night sleep?
One of the conditions that can cause you to not get a good night sleep is sleep apnea. If you think that you may be suffering from sleep apnea, you can learn about sleep apnea and your sleep patterns on a deeper level. Our home sleep study test is a great way to do that.
Here is some of the information that you will need so that you can decide if our home sleep study test is right for you.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition where a person stops breathing in their sleep. As their brain recognizes that there is an inability to breathe, it will rouse them from their sleep. Many times, patients never even realize that they wake up because it is just enough to reset the breathing process. This rousing is enough to force the body out a deep sleep.
This process can happen anywhere from 5 to 30 times per hour and this causes major disruptions to sleep. This disruption of sleep is going to cause a lot of serious problems within a person’s life and their health.
Sleep Apnea Types
Despite the singular term of sleep apnea, there are 3 different types; central sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, and complex sleep apnea syndrome. Each of these different types results in the same problem, but their causes are completely individual.
Central Sleep Apnea
This form of sleep apnea is caused due to a miscommunication. This type is diagnosed in those whose brain is not properly communicating with the muscles that control the act of breathing. There are certain risk factors that can increase a person’s likelihood of developing central sleep apnea including:
- Men are more likely to develop central sleep apnea than women
- Being of an older age
- Certain Heart Conditions (such as congestive heart failure)
- Previously suffering a stroke
- Using narcotic pain killers
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
The most commonly diagnosed sleep apnea is Obstructive sleep apnea. It is called obstructive because the muscles that support the side walls of the throat, the tongue, the soft palate, and the tonsils relax too much. They relax to the point that the throat narrows or closes altogether, restricting a person’s ability to breathe.
Like with central sleep apnea, there are certain risk factors that can make a person more susceptible to developing obstructive sleep apnea, including:
- Being overweight or obese
- Having a narrow airway (genetically)
- Men are more likely to develop obstructive sleep apnea than women
- Family history
- Alcohol/Sedative/Tranquilizer use
- Nasal Congestion
Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome
Complex sleep apnea syndrome, also known as treatment-emergent central sleep apnea, is a combination of central and obstructive sleep apneas. This is the toughest type of sleep apnea to diagnose and to treat because different causes may be happening at different times.
The Symptoms Of Sleep Apnea
The particular type of sleep apnea that may be affecting a person may be difficult to diagnose because many of the symptoms overlap from one type to the other. Sleep apnea, in general, can be diagnosed, but it may take time to figure out the specific type in which a person is suffering from. The symptoms of sleep apnea (in general) that a patient may experience can include:
- Stopping breathing during sleep (this will be reported by another person who observes the behavior)
- Gasping for air while sleeping
- Loud snoring
- Insomnia (not being able to sleep)
- Hypersomnia (extreme tiredness during the day)
- Headaches upon waking up
- Focus issues
Sleep Apnea Can Wreak Havoc
Sleep apnea can really lead to serious issues within a person’s life. One of the most serious things is that the person can suffer serious fatigue throughout the day. This fatigue can cause a person to perform poorly at work, fall asleep while driving, watching television, or just sitting on the couch. It can also cause behavior issues and poor grades in children who suffer from sleep apnea. It can also cause a wide range of different physical health issues such as metabolic syndrome, liver issues, high blood pressure, and even Type 2 diabetes.
Sleep apnea is a serious issue and can cause a lot of problems for people suffering from this sleep disorder. There are things that you can do to figure out if it is time to go to the doctor for help.
Getting Your Diagnosis
Your doctor may be able to make a diagnosis based on the information that a patient and a person that the patient lives with gives them about their sleep patterns.
If they are not able to diagnose a person from their evaluation, they are going to require either an at-home sleep test. Our at-home sleep test can be conducted before you ever go to the doctor.
Our test will monitor a person’s breathing, oxygen levels, and other important information that a doctor will need to help figure out a diagnosis.
A home sleep study gives the patient insight, without an overnight sending stay in the sleep lab.
There are a number of ways that sleep apnea can be treated and it depends on the patient and the type of sleep apnea that they are dealing with. Some people will only require lifestyle changes such as weight loss, allergy treatments, or quitting smoking. It may also require the use of a device used while sleeping.
Such devices include CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) machines or BPAP (bi-level positive air pressure) machines. These devices send air through the nasal passage, which keep the airways open. The patient has continuous air flowing while they sleep.
There are also oral devices that can align the jaw in a way that helps to keep the airway open.
Then there is the possibility of surgery. Surgery is always a last resort that is required when all other treatments have not worked.
Surgeries can include tissue removal, jaw realignment, tissue shrinkage, nerve stimulation, or creatine a reconstructed airway. The proper treatment depends on the particular cause of a person’s sleep apnea.
Understanding Your Own Sleep Patterns
We are not recommending that you treat your own sleep apnea. However, there is nothing wrong with running your own at home sleep study test. You will get a better understanding what is going on with your own body on a deeper level.
An at-home sleep study test is a monitor that you hook up to yourself prior to going to sleep. This monitor is going to record information about your breathing, breathing effort, and your oxygen levels while asleep.
Our at home sleep study test can help you to understand what is going on with your body while you are asleep. Start taking an active role in dealing with your sleep disorder.