Snoring is one of the most common phenomenon observed while sleeping, among a lot of men and women causing embarrassment and discomfort. Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that occurs when a person's breathing is interrupted during sleep, atleast 4-5 times in an hour.
Untreated sleep apnea causes repeated breaks in the air flow during sleep, thereby causing interrupted flow of oxygen to the brain and other parts of the body.
These pauses or breaks during breathing can occur due to either, a physical blockage or respiratory effort to airflow, or a combination of both. When the soft palate tissues of the roof of the mouth and the throat vibrate with respiration, it causes snoring with a peculiar sound.
Sleep related breathing disorders include several potentially serious conditions that include Primary snoring, Upper airway resistance syndrome (UARS), obstructive sleep apnea-hypopnea syndrome (OSAHS), central sleep apnea, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Sleep Apnea can affect anyone, at any age, even children, though predominantly seen in men. Risk factors for sleep apnea include:
Left untreated, Sleep Apnea can cause number of health problems, including:
If you find yourself chronically tired or groggy during the day, it's time you consult an ENT specialist who can determine the cause and offer necessary advice to address the problem. Sleep Apnea is diagnosed at an overnight sleep laboratory that records brain waves, eye and leg movements, oxygen levels, airflow, and heart rhythm during sleep.
Nocturnal Polysomnography : During this test, the patient will be hooked to an equipment that monitors your heart, lung and brain activity, breathing patterns, arm and leg movements, and blood oxygen levels while you sleep. Breaks in sleep will be indicated in the test.
Alternatively Home Sleep Apnea Testing (HSAT), is also done on some individuals where the number of apnea (break) episodes in an hour is determined. From normal apnea of 5 per hour, it can exceed to about 8-10 per hour.
Sleep apnea is a common problem associated with decreased overall health and life-threatening complications, motor vehicle accidents, difficulty in concentrating, depression, heart attack, and stroke.
Depending on the cause and the level of apnea, there are different methods of treatment. The goal of treatment is to normalize breathing during sleep.
Positive Airway Pressure (PAP): Moderate to severe sleep apnea, may be treated with a device that delivers continuous air pressure from a machine through a nose mask while you sleep. The mask, worn snugly over the nose, or sometimes nose and mouth, during sleep, can prevent the sleeper's airway from collapsing.
Oral Appliances: Oral appliances are an effective first line treatment for many sleep apnea sufferers. These appliances prevent the tongue and muscles in the upper airway from collapsing and blocking the air.
Nasal Decongestant: Nasal decongestants are an effective option in cases of snoring or mild sleep apnea. In some cases, surgery is an effective way to improve airflow through the nose.
Normally other treatment options are tried for at least three months, before considering surgery. However, for those few people with certain jaw structure problems, it's a good first option.
Surgery is often effective in treating snoring, when other therapies have failed. The goal of surgery for sleep apnea is to enlarge the airway through your nose or throat to prevent vibration of the soft tissue at the back of your mouth or blockage of your upper air passages that causes sleep apnea.
Surgical options may include:
Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty: This surgical option is effective for sleep apnea but less effective in treating obstructive sleep apnea. The most common is surgery is the uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, or UPPP. During this procedure your doctor removes tissue from the rear of your mouth and top of your throat, as well as your tonsils and adenoids. Routine re-assessment for sleep apnea after surgery is recommended.
Tissue removal: Most children with snoring or sleep apnea have enlarged tonsils, or adenoids, or both. In most of the cases, surgical removal of these tissues cures sleep breathing problems. In the adults, abstinence from alcohol before bedtime is an important part of treating sleep apnea.
Tracheostomy (Creating a new air passageway): This surgery may be considered if other treatments have failed and if you have life-threatening sleep apnea. In this procedure your surgeon makes an opening in your neck and inserts a metal or plastic tube through which you breathe.
Other Options include: Other types of surgery that may help reduce snoring, is by clearing or enlarging air passages: a) Removal of Nasal Polyps or straighten a crooked partition between your nostrils (deviated nasal septum) b) Removal of enlarged tonsils or adenoids c) Weight-loss surgery
Trained ENT specialist will conduct a full evaluation of your mouth and temporomandibular joint to ensure that your teeth and jaw structure are healthy enough to wear an oral appliance.
Experienced Doctors: Our team of doctors are experienced and trained to provide the most effective treatment solutions for ENT, Head and Neck care. Dr. B. Kalyan Chakravarthy, MS ENT / Head and Neck Surgeon, is also a consultant with KIMS hospital, one of the reputed Hospitals in Hyderabad. Several Sleep Apnea conditions have been successful treated at our hospital with patients visiting us for follow-ups since five years.
Affordable Treatment: The hospital approach is to serve patients without causing much difficulty for them. With the service oriented team that we are, offering treatment solutions at an affordable cost is most appreciated by our patients.
Quality Services: BSR ENT Hospital applies latest technologies for various disorders. Whether it's therapies or surgeries, BSR hospitals is equipped to detect sleep apnea with their in-house sleep laboratory, and provide therapies or conduct surgeries that best address the patient's problems.