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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Sleep Apnea

I have told you before about my friend whose husband died before he could be diagnosed with a sleep disorder. I cannot stress enough how important it is to get tested for this condition. Lack of oxygen to the brain can cause damage and/or death. It is so crazy to let it go because it can be treated.

This man never felt like he was rested. He snored so much and so loud that his wife, my friend, chose to sleep in another room.

I think that lack of sleep can lead to other conditions. Driving while sleepy is so dangerous. It causes many wrecks on our highways. People who don't get enough sleep are often anxious and don't make good decisions. Their decisions cause problems in their lives. Problems lead to other stresses and it is a spiraling cycle.

OSA, obstructive sleep apnea, is the most common type of sleep apnea. There are millions suffering from OSA and not even knowing. Patients with OSA breathe normally, but the air is momentarily blocked from entering the lungs because the upper airway collapses during sleep. When you lay down to sleep, your muscles relax. With gravity at work, it’s natural that the airway narrows when you lie down, but in some people, it narrows too much. When the person breathes in, the air struggles to get through the narrowed passage and as it squeezes through, the air tube rattles. You guessed it. That is called snoring! There is HELP for this condition! A CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine is a wonderful tool. It forces the airways to remain open. Allowing for the oxygen that is needed, our bodies go into the deep REM sleep that is needed for a restful night.

An obstructive sleep apnea diagnosis might be the answer to many marriage problems. Grouchiness is just a minor condition compared to:
* High blood pressure
* Heart attack
* Stroke
* Impotence
* Irregular heartbeat
* Heart disease
How many of us snap at our loved ones when we are sleep deprived. We feel anxious and depressed when we get that way. Please, don't delay. Get yourself or your loved one tested. It could let you grow old together. There are videos available that show how the CPAP machine works. If inconvenience is the holdback, watch and see how easy it is to wear. I would think, for quality of life, it would be worth getting used to.


Anonymous said...


Quote " Driving while sleepy is so dangerous. It causes many wrecks on our highways."

I have lost two friend due to this and right now i think what's best for drivers with such disorders is to stop driving. Have something / someone beside to remind them to pull over have a break and continue driving when less sleepy. I use a gadget called the No Nap maybe you might want to have a read on this and see if it could come in handy to save some lifes on our highways. This is the site