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Posts for tag: Sleep Apnea

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.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
February 03, 2017
Category: Health
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

Getting enough sleep is an important part of functioning well during the day. What you may not realize is that many sleep apneapeople fail to get enough sleep because of sleep apnea. This condition often causes snoring and difficulty sleeping for both you and the others in your household. There are some answers to sleep apnea and snoring. Finding the right solutions and treatments to the problem should start with a visit to Dr. Andrew Parker, a Westport, Norwalk and New Canaan ear, nose and throat expert, from Parker Ear, Nose & Throat.

Sleep apnea and snoring can be relieved for some with the use of oral appliances. These are similar to sports guards and orthopedic guards. They work to move the tongue and teeth in the best direction to allow for free breathing when you are sleeping. This makes it easier for you to get enough air and keep you from snoring. In other cases, your doctor at Westport, Norwalk and New Canaan may offer are some surgical procedures that can be used to help you find relief from the snoring and sleep apnea. These procedures remove excess soft tissue from the area opening the flow of air for your throat. This can often be the best solution for those that have tried everything else. Even children can suffer from sleep apnea and lose much-needed sleep night after night. Taking the time to evaluate their situation could make all the difference in how they perform in their daily lives.

Getting sleep is important to you and your family. You can enjoy greater success when you have enough rest to rejuvenate the body and mind. There are options available and you don’t have to suffer from snoring any longer. Working with our experts can bring you peace and make your family happy as well. Call us today at 203-866-8121 to set up an appointment to meet with Dr. Andrew Parker. Our Westport, Norwalk and New Canaan ear, nose and throat team from Parker Ear, Nose & Throat is prepared to get you started on a restful night’s sleep.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
April 04, 2016
Category: Snoring
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

Sleep apnea doesn't just affect the quality of your sleep. It can also cause a variety of health problems, ranging from sleep apneaheadaches to high blood pressure. Dr. Andrew Parker, your Norwalk, New Canaan and Westport, CT ear, nose and throat doctor, describes the signs that could indicate that you have sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea starts with snoring

Snoring is often an indication that you have sleep apnea, but everyone who snores doesn't have the disorder. Ninety million American adults snore, but only 1/2 of people who snore loudly have sleep apnea, according to theNational Sleep Foundation. Since you're asleep when snoring occurs, you may not even be aware that you have a problem, but chances are, other people have mentioned it.

Other signs of sleep apnea

If you have sleep apnea, you may have a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Choking: Have you even woken up suddenly and felt as if you were choking or gasping for air? These symptoms occur when your throat closes down and prevents air from reaching your lungs. When you sleep, your throat muscles and tongue relax, narrowing your airway. Occasionally, your airway walls may collapse completely, which triggers choking or gasping for air.
  • Breathing Pauses: If you sleep with someone else, they may have mentioned that your breathing seems to stop for a few seconds from time to time. When you experience choking or breathing pauses, your brain is temporarily deprived of oxygen. Over time, oxygen deprivation can cause several serious health problems.
  • Dry Mouth: After a busy night of snoring, your mouth will be dry, and your throat may be sore.
  • Headaches: Sleep apnea affects the amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide in your bloodstream, which can cause morning headaches. These headaches usually go away within an hour after you wake up.
  • Sleepiness: Not surprisingly, you may have difficulty staying awake during the day if you have sleep apnea.
  • Mood And Concentration Problems: When you don't get a good night's sleep, your memory and ability to concentrate suffers. You may also feel irritable, moody or depressed.

Who is more likely to develop sleep apnea?

Your Norwalk, New Canaan and Westport ENT can let you know, you might be at an increased risk of developing sleep apnea if you have any of these risk factors:

  • Male
  • Smoker
  • Overweight
  • A family history of sleep apnea
  • High blood pressure
  • Large neck size
  • Over 40 (male) or 50 (women)

Concerned that you may have sleep apnea? Dr. Andrew Parker, your Norwalk, New Canaan and Westport, CT ear, nose and throat doctor, can help. Call him at (203) 866-8121 to schedule an appointment. Don't let a sleep disorder affect your health.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
February 10, 2016
Category: Snoring
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

Occasional bouts of snoring can happen to anyone and are completely normal. A blocked nasal passage due to a sleep apneacold, or even a night out on the town with one too many drinks can make for a noisy night's sleep from time to time. However chronic snoring, accompanied by other symptoms during waking hours, is often a sign of a potentially serious health condition known as sleep apnea. Dr. Andrew Parker, your ENT doctor at Parker Ear Nose & Throat of Fairfield County in Norwalk and Westport, CT, is here to tell you more about this condition.

What is Sleep Apnea?

Loud snoring induced by sleep apnea occurs when a person repeatedly stops breathing for short periods of time throughout the sleep cycle. While many people with sleep apnea may be unaware their breathing is being interrupted, feeling tired and exhausted during the day in spite of getting enough sleep is a common symptom of the condition.

Although the pause in breathing may only last for seconds at a time, if left untreated, sleep apnea can result in serious health risks and complications. There are three main causes for snoring:

  • Central sleep apnea - when the brain's signals to the muscles that regulate breathing during sleep are interrupted.
  • Obstructive sleep apnea - when the throat muscles that control breathing involuntarily relax (this is the most common form of sleep apnea and snoring).
  • Complex sleep apnea - a combination of central and obstructive sleep apnea.

Most people are initially unaware that their breathing is being interrupted throughout the night unless it is witnessed by another person. Some of the symptoms associated with the condition include:

  • Waking up abruptly in the middle of the night and feeling short of breath
  • Waking up with sore throat or dry mouth
  • Unexplained headaches and irritability
  • Trouble focusing
  • Insomnia
  • Hypersomnia (excessive sleepiness throughout the day)

Treatment for Snoring in Norwalk and Westport

Excessive snoring related to sleep apnea is treated by an ear, nose, and throat specialist. Your doctor in Norwalk and Westport offers several treatment options, depending on the severity and cause of the snoring. If left untreated, regular snoring can lead to stress and problems with relationships, as well as potentially serious health risks including:

  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease

Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist in Norwalk and Westport

If you are suffering from chronic snoring and experiencing symptoms of sleep apnea, contact Dr. Andrew Parker at Parker Ear, Nose & Throat in Norwalk and Westport, CT at 203-866-8121 to schedule an exam and to learn more about effective treatment options.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
December 23, 2015
Category: Health
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

Sleep apnea is a condition in which your breathing is restricted or paused for a period of time while you sleep.

Pauses in breathing can occur up to 30 times an hour, and may last for only a few seconds or up to several Sleep Apneaminutes. Breathing will typically restart again with a loud choking or snoring sound.

The inability to breathe properly results in poor quality of sleep. When your breathing becomes restricted, it pulls you out of deep sleep and into a lighter stage of sleep. Your sleep then becomes less restful, and you’re likely to feel extremely tired during the day. Sleep apnea is one of the most common causes of severe daytime sleepiness.

Types of Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea, a condition in which the airway becomes physically blocked, is the most common type of sleep apnea. Over 12 million Americans suffer from it, including men, women, and children of varying ages and health conditions. However, there are certain factors that increase your risk:

  • Male
  • Overweight
  • Middle-aged or older
  • Of African-American, Hispanic, or Pacific Islander heritage
  • Have swollen tonsils or throat tissues
  • Have a deviated septum in the nose

Central sleep apnea is a condition in which the brain does not send the correct breathing signals to your body. This condition can occur in anyone, from older adults to very young babies. Factors that may increase your risk for central sleep apnea include:

  • Congestive heart failure
  • Neurological disorders
  • Kidney failure
  • Hypothyroid disease
  • Damage to the brainstem from stroke, encephalitis, or trauma

Complications of Sleep Apnea

Untreated sleep apnea can lead to an increased risk of:

  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Arrhythmias
  • Heart failure
  • Auto and work-related accidents

Treating Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a chronic condition that requires ongoing treatment and management. Lifestyle changes, specialized mouthpieces, breathing machines, and surgery are treatment options that help many people successfully manage their sleep apnea.

New Canaan Sleep Apnea Treatment

If you suspect that you or someone you care about may be suffering from sleep apnea, don't hesitate to get help. The sooner the condition is recognized and treated, the faster your health and quality of life will improve.

For diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea in New Canaan, schedule an appointment with Andrew J. Parker, M.D.Dr. Parker is a board-certified otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor). Request your appointment now or call 203-866-8121 to get on the path to better sleep and a healthier life.