My Blog

Posts for category: Sleep Issues

By Dr. Andrew Parker
January 11, 2018
Category: Sleep Issues
Tags: Snoring  

Find out why this seemingly innocuous bedtime habit should be treated.

Snoring is a problem that happens to a lot of people. While the occasion snoring-riddled sleep may not be a cause for snoringconcern, if you are someone who is snoring loudly and often then our New Canaan and Norwalk, CT, ENT doctor, Dr. Andrew Parker, is here to tell you why it’s a good idea to treat this sleep issue right away.

Why should you treat snoring?

Most people assume that snoring is just an annoying habit but nothing to really worry about; however, your evening snore sessions could be trying to tell you that you have a more serious health problem. After all, the majority of people with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) are also chronic, loud snorers.

If you are someone who snores regularly, if you find yourself fighting daylong exhaustion, if you find yourself prone to mood swings or if you have trouble concentrating these could all be signs of OSA and you should be evaluated by our New Canaan and Norwalk otolaryngologist as soon as possible.

If you decide not to treat this problem this could lead to some potentially serious issues for your health. Untreated OSA has been linked to numerous health problems including diabetes, heart attack, hypertension (high blood pressure), stroke and heart disease. Plus, those who fight the daytime exhaustion that comes with OSA are also less likely to perform as well at work and are prone to injuries (e.g. car accidents; work-related injuries). To prevent these problems from happening it’s important that you seek an evaluation if you are someone who snores regularly.

How can an ENT specialist help?

Here at Parker Ear, Nose & Throat, we offer a solution known as the Pillar Procedure to safely eliminate snoring and to even provide relief for those dealing with mild-to-moderate OSA. This is a great option for someone who hates the idea of wearing a facemask to bed every night in order to treat their snoring and OSA.

Instead, this quick and minimally invasive procedure targets excess soft palate tissue, which can be responsible for OSA. When you come into our office for this procedure we will first apply a local anesthesia to numb the area. Then small implants are placed into the soft palate where over time the implants will help to stiffen the soft palate to prevent the vibrations responsible for snoring while also keeping the tissue from collapsing and obstructing the airways (another common issue for those with OSA).

If you are living in Norwalk or New Canaan, CT, and are looking for an effective way to treat your snoring issues then give us a call today. Parker Ear, Nose & Throat would be happy to discuss your options with you to help you finally catch those ZZZs.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
June 21, 2017
Category: Sleep Issues
Tags: Sleep Apnea   CPAP  

A lack of sleep may be the most obvious consequence of sleep apnea, but it's not the most serious one. If you don'tSleep Apnea receive treatment for the condition, it can cause serious health problems. Our Westport, New Canaan, and Norwalk, CT, otolaryngologist, Dr. Andrew Parker, explains how sleep apnea affects your body.

The problem

Sleep apnea causes you to stop breathing many times during the night. Although the pauses may only last 10 seconds, the cumulative effect of multiple breathing pauses deprives your brain of oxygen, which increases your risk of developing a range of health problems. Sleep apnea occurs when air can't travel freely from your nose to your lungs. The condition may occur if the walls of your throat become so relaxed that they collapse during sleep or your tongue falls into your airway. Obesity increases your risk of sleep apnea, as does having enlarged tonsils or adenoids.

The consequences

If you ignore sleep apnea, you might develop heart disease and stroke. The condition raises the risk of irregular heartbeat, heart failure, heart attack or high blood pressure. Every time your blood oxygen level decreases due to a breathing pause, your blood pressure increases. Over time, these drops can be very damaging to your heart. If you're a man, your risk of heart disease may rise significantly. According to the results of a research study published in PLOS Medicine, men aged 40 to 70 with severe sleep apnea had twice the risk of dying as men who did not have the condition.

Sleep apnea also increases your risk of developing certain diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, liver disease, and metabolic syndrome. When you don't get enough sleep, it may be more difficult to concentrate at work or when you drive, which can make it more likely that you'll suffer an accident. Depression may also be a problem if you have sleep apnea. People who have the condition often report difficulty losing weight or suffer from morning headaches.

How is sleep apnea treated?

Treatment for sleep apnea involves keeping your airway open while you sleep. If a sleep study reveals that you have sleep apnea, we may recommend that you use a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine when you visit our Westport, New Canaan, and Norwalk office. The machine delivers a continuous flow of air via a small mask while you sleep, preventing breathing pauses. The alternative to CPAP would be UPPP or Uvula of tonsils or a jaw repositioning device.

Don't put your health at risk due to sleep apnea. If you suspect you have sleep apnea, call our Westport, New Canaan, and Norwalk, CT, otolaryngologist, Dr. Parker, at (203) 866-8121 to schedule an appointment.