What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder. It causes
breathing to repeatedly stop and start during sleep. There are several
types of sleep apnea, but the most common is obstructive sleep apnea.
This type of apnea occurs when your throat muscles intermittently relax
and block your airway during sleep. A noticeable sign of obstructive sleep
apnea is snoring. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) occurs when a person’s
breathing decreases or stops repeatedly during sleep.
- Breathing is affected because part of the upper airway is too large or
relaxes during sleep causing a collapse.
- In the presence of breathing interruption sleep patterns are disrupted,
preventing good quality of sleep.
- In addition to disrupted sleeping patterns, OSA can cause decreased oxygen
supply to the brain, heart, and other vital organs.
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea is a serious and potentially life-altering and
life-threatening condition that can lead to stroke, heart disease, diabetes,
Signs and Symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea
- Pauses in breathing during sleep
- Gasping or choking during sleep
- Restless sleep
- Excessive fatigue during the day
- Morning headaches
- Sexual dysfunction
- Frequent urination at night
- Poor concentration or judgment
- Memory Loss
Risk Factors for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
- Large neck circumference (>16” Men, >15” Women)
- Excess weight
- Family history
- Dental problems
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is completely treatable and covered by most insurances.
Often times if you have a mild case of OSA it can be treated with lifestyle
changes such as exercise, losing weight, avoiding alcohol and medications,
using nasal decongestant, or simply avoiding sleeping on your back. If
you have a moderate to severe case a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway
Pressure) machine, oral sleep devices, or possible surgery can help open
up blocked airways. For more information contact Gunnison Valley Health
Schedule an Appointment
If you would like to schedule an appointment, please first speak to your
primary care physician for a referral. If you have additional questions
or would like more information please contact the Sleep Lab at
970-642-4811 or complete the contact form below.