A Simple Snoring May Mask Your Sleep Apnea Problem
Sleep apnea is a common problem. The most common definition is a sleep disorder characterised by the stoppage of breathing while sleeping from 10 to 50 seconds and gasping for breath or snoring or snoring. Many patients with sleep apnea in Singapore either often look for professional treatments, or some aren’t aware that they have the condition.
The First Sign Of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is an invisible condition since many aren’t aware that they have one until the diagnosis results are shown by an ENT doctor. The first sleep apnea symptom is snoring. It is the first symptom any patient will become aware of yet is often overlooked by many. However, this symptom is not always indicative of sleep apnea. But if the snoring is loud or is more of a choking sound, the culprit may be sleep apnea. Hence if your loved one is experiencing this, consider visiting an ENT/sleep clinic in Singapore.
Snoring is caused by a blockage or obstruction in the airway passage. The sound of snoring is from the collapsible parts—which are the soft tissue at the back of our mouth that relax when we sleep. Once these tissues are in relaxed states, the air can’t flow through the nose or mouth. The vibration and sound are created as these structures strike each other as the air struggles to pass.
At the end of the day, your body needs to sleep to rejuvenate itself. By sleeping for 7 to 8 hours, your body has enough energy to keep you functioning daily. Seeing an ENT doctor will provide more insights into your sleep problem further.
If you are suffering from sleep apnea, your body cannot maintain REM sleep due to inadequacy in oxygen levels. When we are experiencing gaps in breathing, there will be a shortage of oxygen. Thus, this sends a signal to the brain for you to wake up. Therefore, most patients who experience sleep apnea have trouble:
- Trouble maintaining asleep
- Still feel tired after waking up
- Lack of energy after sleeping
- Waking up frequently in the middle of sleep
You eventually have what is referred to as a chronic sleep deficiency, and this leads to another sleep apnea symptom of excessive daytime sleepiness. Hence, if your loved ones have complained about your snoring. You must take it into consideration and visit an ENT doctor in Singapore.
Understanding The Cause of Snoring
People who are at risk include overweight or obese individuals. Now, why is that so? Such individuals have a larger-than-average neck. The excess fleshy structure in the throat (including fats and tissues) will take up more space than usual. Because of that, it narrows the air passage while adding more obstructions because of these excesses.
Enlarged tonsils can also be caused by tonsilitis and can put you at risk of snoring while you sleep. Some patients can end up suffering from sleep apnea and other sleep disorders. Tonsilitis can also happen to children. It means they can also experience sleeping problems. Hence, you should always seek treatment for tonsillitis in Singapore. On the other hand, individuals (both men and women) above age 50 have a higher risk for sleep apnea.
Sleeping disorders, primarily sleep apnea, is a non-discriminatory conditions. It affects all individuals, including people with diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure.
On the other hand, any excess tissues in the airway passage can also induce sleep apnea. Hence it explains why a number of people who experience snoring problems have larger adenoids or obstructive tonsils. If you also have a stuffy nose or nasal congestion, it could also add to the problem. One would need to breathe harder. It creates a vacuum in the throat. Hence, a person who has colds may experience sleeping problems and sometimes would end up snoring. However, you can always visit an ENT doctor for diagnosis and treatment.
Mouth breathing is another way that leads to snoring. During sleep, the jaw may drop. This leaves enough space and room for the tongue to fall back to the throat—creating an obstruction in the airway that will lead to snoring. Nonetheless, it can be successfully treated with a number of options available.
Treatments & Remedies For Snoring Problem
Sleep apnea, primarily snoring problems, can be treated by an ENT doctor. Treating sleep apnea in Singapore is more accessible. Today, there are many techniques and methods that professional ENT doctors can conduct on patients, from surgeries (removing unwanted excess tissues) to using prescribed devices (such as CPAP masks) and medicines (nasal strips).
In some circumstances, an ENT doctor may also prescribe sleeping techniques to prevent or minimise the risk of snoring, such as sleeping on your side or replacing your mattress. However, the most common (and likely) advice is to practise sleeping on the side. It is because sleeping on the back will also cause the tongue to move toward the throat—which will cause obstruction in the airway. This explains why snoring tends to occur more when we sleep on our back.
Another common sleeping technique that an ENT doctor will likely prescribe is raising or elevating the head of the bed. Raising the head part of the bed by a few inches will help keep the airways open and prevent obstruction. However, if your bed doesn’t have an adjustment or bed risers, you can always use pillows to help add extra height.
Another common way to prevent and eliminate sleeping problems is to avoid alcohol and maintain a balanced weight. Weight is one of the most significant factors for sleep apnea. Reducing your weight will also help reduce the tissues and fats that make up the throat area without going for expensive surgery.
If you are looking for an ENT specialist in Singapore along the Novena area, visit Dr Gan EngCern for ENT treatment services.