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WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE STOP BREATHING IN OUR SLEEP

Kate noticed that she often wakes up from sleep with a jerk, panting and gasping for breath within short interval. On a particular occasion she thought she was going to die, her airways were blocked and her breathe ceased. She immediately knee she couldn't ignore this, either someone was trying to kill her spiritually or she has a medical condition.
WHAT IS SLEEP APNEA?

Sleep apnea is a medical condition which causes a restricted, shallow or brief stop in breathing while sleeping. This condition usually occurs due to an obstruction in the airways. It is calledApnea if breathing stops briefly andhypopnea if breathing reduces only.
Types of sleep apnea
  • Obstructive sleep apnea - This is common , it occurs when muscles in the back of the throat relax. When this happens, airways begins to narrow or close and the individual can't get enough breath in. This may lower the level of oxygen in the blood and the brain immediately sees this and wakes the individual forcefully to re open the airways. This process is usually brief and somewhat sudden.
    Victims affected by this usually find out they are drowsy all day and are not productive at work. This is because obstructive sleep apnea is preventing them from having a good night sleep.
  • central sleep apnea `
    This isn't as common as the other and it occurs when the brain fails to transmit signals to the breathe muscles. This means that an individual facing this makes no efforts to breathe for a short period of time . So he or she is awakened with shortnesss of breathe and going back to sleep becomes difficult.
Some popular symptoms of sleep apnea
  • difficulty staying asleep
  • feeling fatigued during the day
  • loud snoring with intermittent periods of silence while sleeping(yes, watch that loud snoring, it may be a medical condition)
  • waking up with headaches
What exactly can cause sleep Apnea?
This is sad but excess weight is a factor, coincidentally, people with excessive weight tend to snore a lot.
This is not fair but people with thicker necks are also prone to this ailment. It is said that the thicker the neck, the narrower the airways.
This is also not fair, men are known to be more prone to this ailment. Men are diagnosed 8 times as much as women.It is said that men snore loudly more than women and women tend to have lower apnea/hypopnea indexes (AHI).
Hereditary causes, there are people with natural narrow airways..
Use of pain medication
Heart disorders as well as stroke is a risk factor too.
After effects of sleep apnea
The consequences of this ailment can include:
  • Fatigue
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart problem
  • diabetes
    *liver
    A whole lot of diseases don't you think?
Sleep Apnea causes difficulty Breathing When Lying Down
Sleep apnea is one of the major factors behind difficulty in breathing when lying down.
Difficulty in breathing when lying down may be a sign of a serious medical condition. A lot of things can cause difficulty in breathing.
Apart from sleep apnea, diseases, anxiety and lifestyle factors are a reason for this as well. For instance, an individual who panics a lot can have difficulty in breathing often. Someone who sleeps facing up or in an abnormal manner, may have issues breathing when lying down.
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Lying down too soon after eating may also cause difficulty breathing. This is because the food may try to come back or press down on your diaphragm. Your diaphragm separates your stomach from your lungs. Sitting up for a few hours until you digest the food can often relieve this uncomfortable feeling.
If you’re obese or extremely overweight, you may also experience difficulty breathing when lying down. Too much weight puts pressure on the lungs and diaphragm, wearing tight clothing may cause the same feeling.
Treatment
In the U.S, breathing devices such as continuous positive air pressure machines (CPAP) are used to treat sleep apnea. The CPAP is a mask covering nose / mouth gently blowing air into the airways.
Exercising diligently also helps, this can also help prevent the ailment in a way. Adenoid removal and palatoplasty are surgeries which are also performed to remove tissues.
Can sleep apnea lead to death?
A pause or stop in breathing during sleep can occur often in some indivuduals. Each moment may not be more than 60secs but if this occurs frequently it is dangerous.
A study shows that people with severe sleep apnea may be up to three times more likely to die prematurely, and that risk increases if the sleep disorder is left untreated. Sleep apnea itself causes various terminal diseases such has heart problems and stroke.
Prevention
Did I hear someone ask " how not to get this thing?" Prevention is usually said to be better than cure. They following tips are certain to help:
  • Exercise and don't get overweight
  • Stay away from caffeine
  • Quit smoking
  • practice good sleeping techniques i.e sleep on your side.
  • Sleep for the normal duration of hours you should..do not deprive your body of sleep.

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