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The Ultimate Guide Of Sleep Apnea

The Ultimate Guide Of Sleep Apnea

Overview: Obstructive sleep apnea-hypopnea syndrome is a sleep-disordered disease of unknown etiology

Clinical symptoms: sleep snoring at night with apnea, daytime sleepiness

Harm: can affect sleep, and the cardiovascular system, or even cause sudden death

Complications: hypertension, coronary heart disease, diabetes, cerebrovascular disease, etc.

Dietary advice: Daily diet should avoid ingestion of spicy stimulation, greasy and fatty food.


1. Some abnormal physical parts of our body may cause sleep apnea, such as nasopharyngeal tumours, palate tonsil hypertrophy, oropharyngeal stenosis, and long uvula, etc.

2. Endocrine factors such as hypothyroidism and diabetes can induce or aggravate the disease.

3. With the increase of age, the body tissue relaxes, and muscle tone weakens, which may cause the pharyngeal wall to relax, collapse and move inward and finally lead to the sleep apnea.

4. Other reasons are included such as obesity, genetics, drinking, pregnancy, menopause and perimenopause.

Symptoms and diagnosis

Typical symptoms:

1. Snoring: Snoring during sleep is caused by the vibration of the soft palate when air passes through the oropharynx. Snoring means that the airway is partially narrowed and blocked. Snoring is a characteristic manifestation of OSAHS(obstructive sleep apnea-hypopnea syndrome). This kind of snoring is different from simple snoring; the volume is loud; the snoring sound is irregular and intermittent.

2. Daytime sleepiness: OSAHS patients always show daytime fatigue or lethargy.

3. Apnea occurs during sleep: Heavier patients often hold their breath at night, or even sit up suddenly, sweating and feeling dying.

Other symptoms:

1. Nocturia increased: Nocturia increased at night due to apnea, and some patients developed enuresis.

2. Headache: Due to lack of oxygen, the patient has a headache in the morning.

3. Personality changes and other systemic complications: including grumpy temperament, loss of intelligence and memory, and sexual dysfunction. Severe cases can cause hypertension, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and cerebrovascular disease.

Sleep Apnea Treatment

Treatment policy: Emphasize comprehensive treatment for this disease, quit smoking and alcohol, and lose weight in obese people. For those who cannot tolerate surgery, continuous positive pressure ventilation therapy is a better choice.

Surgical treatment:

The purpose of surgical treatment is to reduce and eliminate airway obstruction and prevent airway soft tissue collapse. The choice of surgical method depends on the airway obstruction location, severity, whether there are morbid obesity and general conditions. Commonly used surgical techniques are as follows.

1.Tonsil adenoidectomy: This type of surgery is suitable for adult patients with tonsil hyperplasia, or pediatric patients caused by adenoid hyperplasia.

2. Nasal surgery: If the nasal airway is obstructed due to curved nasal septum, nasal polyp, or turbinate hypertrophy, nasal septoplasty can be performed to remove nasal polyps or turbinates to relieve symptoms.

3. Other surgical methods will not be listed here. You could inquire about professional doctors.

Other treatments:

1. Continuous nasal positive airway pressure breathing (CPAP): This method is currently the most effective treatment for moderate to severe OSAHS. Most patients can achieve satisfactory therapeutic effects through CPAP treatment. Please pay attention to clean your CPAP machine using warm water or some CPAP cleaning machine to ensure it's clean and safe to use.

2. Oral appliance: wearing an oral device during sleep can elevate the soft palate, pull the tongue actively or passively forward, and move the jaw forward to expand the oropharynx and hypopharynx. It is the primary method for treating simple snoring or OSAHS, which is also one of the essential auxiliary methods of surgical treatment. However, it is not sufficient for patients with moderate to severe OSAHS.

Fighting with sleep apnea is a long term life. Keep a healthy lifestyle and keep connected with your doctors getting professional suggestions and advice, especially in this challenging moment.

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