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Posts for tag: Sleep Apnea

By Dr. Andrew Parker
March 05, 2020
Category: Sleep Issues
Tags: Sleep Apnea   Snoring  

Do you snore often? More than just an annoying sleep pattern, snoring can indicate sleep apnea, a potentially deadly condition. Fortunately, here at Parker Ear, Nose, and Throat of Fairfield County in Norwich, CT, your otolaryngologist, Dr. Andrew Parker, can determine if you have sleep apnea and diagnose a proper treatment.

Snoring versus Sleep Apnea

According to the American Sleep Apnea Organization, snoring occurs when throat tissues relax and block the airway. This snoring causes a vibration, which creates a distinct sound. Anatomy, weight, alcohol consumption, and other factors impact the loudness of snoring.

Snoring is also a sign of sleep apnea. The primary difference is a person with sleep apnea will stop breathing for as long as a minute. During sleep, the person snoring may make snorting or gasping sounds.

Obesity, the size of the tongue or tonsils, age, and anatomy of the head and neck can all impact snoring and sleep apnea.

Health Risks of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea may be the result of a more severe condition such as congestive heart failure or nasal obstruction. Sleep apnea health risks can include:

  • Poor sleep quality, making you tired throughout the day
  • Weight gain
  • Heart conditions, including high blood pressure and atrial fibrillation
  • Stroke
  • Type II Diabetes

Your partner may also suffer from a lack of sleep due to your snoring.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Sleep Apnea

If you suspect you have sleep apnea, consult your physician, or contact an otolaryngologist such as Dr. Parker in Norwalk, CT.

A sleep study in a hospital or certified sleep center is necessary to confirm sleep apnea. Some of the items measured while you sleep include brain activity, heart rate, eye movements, respiration, and leg movement. The most critical measure is the amount and number of times your breathing stops during your sleep time.

If diagnosed with sleep apnea, some of the most common preventative measures include the following.

  • Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) Devices: These devices provide masks that supply air pressure that ensures your airway remains open.
  • Oral Devices: These pieces are worn in the mouth while you sleep to hold the lower jaw in position and prevent the upper airway from blocking the airway.
  • Weight Loss: Reducing your weight can alleviate some of the worst effects of sleep apnea

Call Us

For more information on your options, call (203) 866-8121 for an appointment with Dr. Parker of Paker Ear, Nose, and Throat of Fairfield County in Norwalk, CT.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
May 09, 2019
Category: Sleep Issues
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

The answer to better sleep could lie in treating your persistent snoring.

Does your partner complain that your snoring is out of control and it keeps them up at night? Are your snoring issues getting worse as you sleep apneaget older? Something could be an indicator that something more serious like sleep apnea is going on. Our Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, otolaryngologist Dr. Andrew Parker can help determine what’s causing your snoring and the best solution to give you a better (and quieter) night’s rest.


When Snoring is a Problem

While many people may snore occasionally due to alcohol consumption, allergies or a cold, if you are someone who snores loudly and quite frequently this could be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. During OSA, the upper airways constrict or collapse, blocking off air as well as oxygen to the blood.

Those with OSA do not get the quality rest they need, which can lead to problems throughout the day. If OSA goes untreated this can also lead to serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure.


Signs and Symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea

While the snorer often won’t notice any symptoms it’s usually their bed partner who alerts them to the issue that is going on. It’s important not to ignore these complaints, as they could be indicators that something more serious is going on with your health. Symptoms of OSA include,

  • Loud, persistent snoring
  • Daytime fatigue and exhaustion
  • Waking up throughout the night gasping for air
  • Pauses in breathing while asleep
  • Morning headaches
  • Dry mouth or sore throat
  • Mood swings
  • Brain fog and trouble concentrating
  • Issues with high blood pressure


How an Otolaryngologist Can Help

Here in Norwalk CT, our ENT doctors are dedicated to helping you control your symptoms to get restorative sleep and to prevent certain serious and chronic health problems. First, we will go through your medical history and ask you questions regarding your symptoms.

We will also perform a full examination of the nose, mouth, neck and throat. We will also check for any problems such as a nasal obstruction or infection that could be causing your snoring. If we suspect that your snoring is due to OSA we may recommend undergoing a home sleep study to diagnose your sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is often treated with CPAP therapy, Pillar implants, or surgery in some cases.

If you or a loved one is a chronically loud snorer then it’s high time that you turned to ENT specialist Dr. Andrew Parker in Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, that can treat this issue properly. If you snore or think you may be dealing with sleep apnea, then it’s time to give us a call. Call (203) 866-8121.

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.