NBC Medical Segment
I am sure we all know or have known someone who snores and their social implications (100 million Americans). By definition benign snoring is simply a narrowing of the airway forcing air to enter at a much higher velocity. This increase in speed causes the soft tissue at the back of the throat to flutter or vibrate, causing the sounds of snoring! More importantly, snoring can be a signal of a more serious, life threatening breathing disorder, that of Obstructive Sleep Apnea or OSA. In addition, snoring, although benign can be precurser to future OSA if untreated.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea takes snoring a step further in that the airway not only narrows but totally closes for 10 seconds or longer (OSA definition) depriving the lungs of needed oxygen. From the lungs, life sustaining oxygen normally enters the bloodestream and is delivered to every organ and cell of the body especially the heart and brain! The longer the blockage, the lower the blood oxygen level and the higher the CO2 level. To compensate, the heart must work much harder to pump blood/oxygen throughout the body and can lead to irreversible cardiovascular disease!!! If allowed to continue the insult to to the body will result in elevated blood pressure, stroke, and possible heart failure.
Obstructive Sleep Aapnea affects adults and children in a completly differnt manner.
For specifics on: Sleep Apnea in Adults, Symptoms, Causes and Treatments.
For specifics on:Sleep Apnea in Children, Symptoms, Causes and Treatments.
To take a: Self Assesment Tests.
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