This is a condition in which your breathing pauses during sleep because of blockage of the airways. The pause in breathing is called apnea.
Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition in which your breathing pauses during sleep because of blockage of the airways. The pause in breathing is called apnea. The loud snoring associated with obstructive sleep apnea is caused by air trying to pass through the narrowed airway.
The first signs of obstructive sleep apnea are often noted by family members, especially a bed partner. Your family may state you snore loudly and stop breathing when you are sleeping. Contact your healthcare provider if you have symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea. They will take a history of your symptoms and do a complete physical examination. A sleep study, called a polysomnogram, is the most common test to determine if you have a sleep disorder. The test may also be done with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). This is done to assess the quality of your sleep while you wear a mask that delivers pressurized air to keep your airway open.
The main goal of treatment for obstructive sleep apnea is to keep the airways open during sleep. Treatment can include:
Surgery may be recommended in severe cases.
Contact your healthcare provider if you have symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea. Be prepared to discuss your symptoms and how long you have had them.
Here are some questions to ask your healthcare provider.
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