Sleep Apnea is not just a case of having a bad night sleep.
These potentially life-threatening disorders have ramifications in every aspect of the sufferer’s existence.
Keep reading to see the five life complications of sleep apnea.
Physical Health Complications of Sleep Apnea
Many think of sleep apnea as a simple annoyance but it can have a serious impact on your health.
Health Sleep Apnea Complications can affect one’s heart, blood pressure, and risk of stroke. It can also lead to diabetes and other dangerous conditions. Each of these conditions has its own risks to your physical well-being.
Sleep apnea needs to be recognized, diagnosed, and treated as early as possible. This can often be as easy as having a home sleep study to test you for sleep apnea.
If you’re diagnosed with sleep apnea, there are varying courses of treatment that allow for individual care plans.
Some can find relief through sleep apnea exercises. Others may benefit from CPAP machines, the Pillar procedure, or other medical interventions.
Sleep apnea complications are not just limited to your physical health. However, this is an important reason to focus on managing it properly and quickly.
Mental & Emotional Health Complications
Not sleeping well leads to several sleep apnea complications. These include reduced oxygen intake, being tired, and leaving one physically and emotionally drained.
You may also experience difficulties with concentration, communication, and mental acuity. These can lead to struggles with depression, ADHD, and other mental or emotional consequences.
Harvard Medical School has reported a link between untreated sleep difficulties and the development some mental health disorders.
Financial Sleep Apnea Complications
Sleep apnea can affect one’s earning potential by causing missed or less productive days.
Medical bills, medications, and treatment equipment can bring financial burden if action is not taken early.
The sooner one is proactive in sleep apnea awareness and treatment, the less impact it will have on their life.
Relationship & Social Complications
Sleep apnea complications impact you and those you interact with in every aspect of life. Your family, friends, and coworkers can be affected by your untreated sleep apnea.
It’s more difficult to be present and focus on quality relationships and interactions when you’re dealing with sleep apnea.
Many couples can’t sleep in the same room because of untreated sleep apnea and snoring disorders. Sleeping on the couch or in the spare room can put a strain on intimacy and communication.
Coworkers have to work harder if you’re sick or not giving 100%. Family can’t have your complete attention when your energy is depleted because of a poor night’s sleep.
Career & Personal Complications
Sleep apnea complications can lead to loss of employment or missed opportunities for promotion or advancement.
It’s hard to reach your potential when all your energy is concentrating on staying awake.
Bonding experiences with family and friends are often missed or less fulfilling because of sleep apnea and its impact on your life.
Sleep apnea should be taken seriously, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
Take charge by learning about treatment options such The Pillar procedure for sleep apnea. You don’t have to lose sleep over sleep apnea when you meet it head-on.
Contact us to learn more about the right options for you.
People assume that evicting your spouse from the family bed will result in less intimacy.
But this doesn’t have to be the case; you can keep the intimacy. It actually can have the opposite effect! You can still spend time being intimate and before you go to your respective beds.
Lack of sleep can lead to friction among spouses, which leads to trouble in paradise. Sleep deprivation is a severe condition. The CDC regards it as a public safety risk. Because of how alarming the side effects can be.
Sleeping in separate beds can be beneficial to your relationship, states this study. In the study, thirteen happy couples sleep in different beds. And they couldn’t be happier with their relationships!
3. Take Preventative Measures
Snoring can drastically change relationships, and in some cases cause break-ups or divorces.
In this survey, 3 out of 10 women stated that their spouse’s snoring causes disputes. And 30 out of the 500 woman said the snoring was the main factor in their break-up.
So what can you do to cope while your partner is snoring away?
Preventative Measures to Help You Cope Better:
White noise machines
You can also try preventative measures for your snoring partner.
Preventative Measures for the Snoring Spouse:
Saline nose spray
If coping with your snoring partner is becoming too much, it’s time to seek out help.
It’s near impossible to carry on a normal life when you’re dealing with lack of sleep. Or even worse, sleep deprivation.
If you or your spouse is ready to take the next step towards better sleep, contact us.
Are you concerned that you may have a deviated septum? The condition can be confusing to figure out, but it is relatively easy to diagnose.
If you want to learn more about the basics of a deviated septum, you’ve come to the right place.
Below, we’ve put together a brief guide to help you better understand some deviated septum causes and symptoms.
What is a Deviated Septum?
First of all, it is helpful to understand exactly what a deviated septum is in order to better understand its causes.
Inside the nose, there is a piece of cartilage that separates one nostril from the other. This is called the septum. Usually, it is straight down the middle of the nose, making both nasal passages equal in size.
In the case of a deviated septum, however, the septum does not go straight down the center. This occurs when the septum does not divide the nose evenly, making one nostril larger than the other.
When this uneven separation is severe, a deviated septum is the result.
Deviated Septum Causes
More often than not, deviated septum causes are outside of someone’s control. Though many people may have an uneven division of their nose, not everyone has a case so severe that it can be considered a fully deviated septum.
A deviated septum can be congenital, which means that the patient was born with a deviated septum. It can also be a hereditary condition, which means it was passed down through your genes.
In newborns, the deviated septum is often a smooth S- or C-shape. When a deviated septum occurs as a result of trauma or injury, on the other hand, the angles and level of deviation can be severe.
However, other deviated septum causes include injury or illness. If a person is injured during activities like fighting, accidents, or sports, one could occur.
Lastly, sometimes a deviated septum is brought on with age. A person may have never had a deviated septum before, and then it develops over time.
Symptoms of a Deviated Septum
A deviated septum can lead to difficulty breathing and even a blocked nostril. Loud or noisy breathing, headaches, and facial pain are also common symptoms of a deviated septum.
Obviously, having a deviated septum can lead to poor sleep and a decrease in overall health. People who are suffering from a deviated septum may also experience congestion, frequent sinus infections, and nosebleeds.
The condition can be both a nuisance and a dangerous experience, which is why it is important to seek treatment. Medications and possibly surgery are the usual routes for treating a deviated septum, but every case is different. Being diagnosed by a doctor and talking with him or her about the options is the best move.
Want to Learn More? Start Here!
Don’t simply read up on the deviated septum causes and then neglect to take action. There is treatment available for this condition, and those suffering from a deviated septum should seek treatment and stop suffering.
Have more questions about deviated septums? Contact us today!
Sleep apnea is a serious sleep problem that is characterized by the interruption of a person’s breathing during sleep and affects over 18 million Americans. Those with untreated sleep apnea can experience hundreds of breathing pauses or interruptions when sleeping.
If you have this condition, there are several sleep apnea exercises that you can do at home to improve your sleep. Most of these exercises involve using your throat and mouth to work your throat, tongue, soft palate, and jaw.
In this post, we’re are going to share some of the recommended oropharyngeal exercises. Read on to learn more!
1. Throat Tiger Yell Exercises
Silent yelling is one of the ideal exercises for working your throat to manage sleep apnea. This exercise is also known as Tiger yell. You simply need to open your mouth wide without necessarily yelling or making any noise.
The goal here is to strengthen the muscles at the back of your throat. Make sure you open your mouth as wide as you can until your uvula is lifted. Hold the position for at least five minutes and then relax.
2. Tongue Slide Exercises
These sleep apnea exercises help in strengthening your jaw exercises. You’ll need to do them regularly for at least 30 minutes to benefit from them.
Just slide your tongue out and try to push the tip as far as it will go towards the nose. Hold the tongue for a few seconds and then relax. Try to do this exercise at least 10 times during every session.
During sleep, a weak, soft palate can cause sleep apnea by moving into your throat opening. As such, you need to exercise your palate to avoid this problem.
With this exercise, just close your mouth and breathe in slowly through your nose. Then press your lips together to create a resistance and the exhale through your mouth. Try to make the exhaling action last for about five seconds.
Consider doing this exercise at least four times daily.
Close your mouth and keep the teeth in close contact. Allow your tongue to rest with the tip positioned in front of the upper teeth. Then try to arch the tough against the roof of your tongue and slide it tip along the roof as far as it can get.
Maintain the tongue in that position and open your mouth slowly until the tongue is no longer touching the roof.
5. Try Playing Didgeridoo
Playing didgeridoo is a useful exercise for managing mild to moderate obstructive sleep. This works by training muscles in the upper airways that control dilation.
Place the didgeridoo in your mouth with the lips firm around the tip. Then inflate your cheeks with air. While maintaining the inflation, inhale and exhale through your nose. Play the didgeridoo every day to make the most of it.
Sleep Apnea Exercises – The Takeaway
When you experience constant sleep interruptions during the night, you can be drowsy during the day. Severe sleep apnea may put you at risk of road crashes and work related accidents.
These are some of the ideal sleep apnea exercises you can do every day to manage your sleep disorder. However, keep in mind that they might not work for everyone. They’re ideal when the cause of your apnea is weak lax muscles.
Do you have any question on sleep apnea? Just contact us, and we’ll be happy to help.
This surgery is a bit more invasive than the previously mentioned procedures, however. The recovery period can also be longer and can take about three weeks.
The surgery works through the removal of tissue and widening of the airways.
A Tonsillectomy or an Adenoidectomy are also used to get rid of snoring. Instead of stiffening of the palate, these procedures work by removing either the tonsils or the adenoids.
Tonsils and adenoids can sometimes lead to snoring. Their removal can sometimes help patients to breathe easier at night.
These procedures, however, are outpatient procedures. The recovery period is usually about 1-2 weeks.
Nasal Surgeries to Cure Snoring
Clearing the nasal passageway is another popular method of getting rid of snoring. Several types of procedures help to do this.
Nasal congestion has often been shown to increase or cause snoring. As a result, eliminating nasal obstructions and causes such as allergies, septal deviation, and polyps can help to reduce snoring.
Procedures such as Radiofrequency Turbinate Reduction (RFTR) can be performed under local anesthesia in an office setting. The procedure uses radiofrequency heat to shrink swollen tissues in both sides of the nose.
It can be a big decision to undergo surgery. It is best to try other methods first in order to deal with a snoring problem. Some methods include changing your diet or improving nightly habits.
If you’ve exhausted other options, however, one of the procedures above may be just what you need to get your sleep habits back on track again.
If you’re ready to find out more about possible options for curing snoring, contact us today.
Everyone knows that skimping on sleep isn’t great for your health. Not many people, though, ever stop to question their sleep quality.
The quality of your sleep is just as important as the quantity of sleep you get. Low-quality sleep can negatively affect your health in the same ways that sleep deficiency can.
The negative side effects of poor sleep are both mental and physical, and everyone should be aware of what exactly these effects are. That said, here are some ways in which poor sleep quality affects your health.
Mood & Other Elements Of Your Mental Health
We’ve all had the experience of not getting enough sleep. We’ve also all had experience of having our sleep interrupted. We might not think that the former is worse, but, as it turns out, the latter is actually much worse.
Interrupted sleep can be caused by a number of factors (e.g. snoring, physical discomfort, etc.). Regardless of what causes it, interrupted sleep can wreak havoc on your mood.
It’s also not too great for the brain. Even when you don’t get enough sleep, your body gets the chance to enter into deep sleep. This is why people sometimes feel groggy after “enjoying” 8 hours of interrupted sleep.
When your sleep is interrupted, however, your body gets no such chance. Deep sleep is where most of the important stuff happens. If your body never gets there, it misses out on some great benefits.
If you’re someone who constantly battles to get a night’s worth of uninterrupted sleep, you should see your doctor about it. He or she will be able to help you discover any underlying issues you might have.
Stress & Physical Discomfort
Low sleep quality can also cause a fair amount of physical discomfort. People who sleep on low-quality mattresses (or other surfaces) can experience more stress than their peers. As you may know, stress has the ability to take a tremendous toll on the body.
The surface you sleep on might also cause you physical pain. Some people, for instance, report that their mattresses cause them back pain.
Interestingly enough, this physical discomfort has the potential to lead to interrupted sleep. This means that physical discomfort could possibly open sleepers up to some of the issues we discussed in the previous section.
Having said that, if you routinely wake up feeling sore or stressed out, it might be time to upgrade your mattress or stop sleeping on the couch so much. You might not want to spend the money, but you can’t let your frugality ruin your health.
Investing In Your Sleep Quality
Whether your sleep quality is affecting your mental or physical health, it’s time to invest in improving the quality of your sleep. For some of you, this means that you’ll have to go mattress shopping. For others, it means that you’ll have to take more serious measures.
Those of you who snore or have sleep apnea, for example, might consider getting the Pillar Procedure done. Before you go through with any procedure, though, make sure its right for you.
If you happen to live near one of our offices, contact us to find out more about having a procedure or two done at one of our locations. We offer a number of treatments which are designed to help people like you get a good night’s rest.
A deviated septum can be the culprit behind a whole lot of issues such as nosebleeds, headaches, congestion, and of course, snoring.
Septoplasty, the medical term for getting a deviated septum treatment, is a common and quick procedure that will see you in and out of the hospital within the day.
Whatever your reason is for getting a deviated septum treatment, taking care of yourself post operation is just as important to how your nose will heal as the surgery itself.
So, for when your procedure is over, here are 5 tips for you to make sure recovery goes just as well as the surgery did.
1. Don’t Hit the Nose on the Button
Even though your brain may just ignore it, your nose is always in your line of vision. For the next few weeks, however, you’re going to need to have your brain be aware of it.
The first thing you’re going to keep in mind is to keep your nose elevated. Especially at night and during the first days after the surgery when your nose is most likely to bleed.
You’re also going to want to be more aware of when you need to sneeze and when you feel like you have to blow your nose for a week or so. As uncomfortable as it may be, you will want to refrain from doing those things because it may be rather painful if you don’t
Wear button up clothing.
No, that’s not fashion advice either. Wearing button ups means you don’t have to pull shirts over your head and run the risk of touching your sensitive nose right now. If you just have to wear a normal shirt, be sure you stretch the collar wide while going over your face.
2. Gauze and Ice Make It Heal It Nice
Ice and Gauze are going to be your best friends for the first week or so after you have a deviated septum treatment.
More than likely, there will be a lot of blood. It’s not uncommon to have to use a new gauze pad every hour or so immediately following the septoplasty.
As time continues to pass, you’ll have to change the gauze out less, but be sure to monitor the gauze/blood for the first couple of days before the bleeding stops.
With any treatment on your nose, you will experience some swelling around nose and eyes. Ice it. You can use ice packs or use your mother’s old tricks and put some frozen veggies.
Be sure to put it on gently just to avoid the pain.
A key to remember here is to avoid aspirin or ibuprofen or similar medications for about a month after the surgery. They thin the blood and can lead to more bleeding.
Your body has gone (and is still going) through a lot. It simply needs to rest. Make sure your boss knows before hand about the surgery so you can have the days following the treatment off.
Rest and sleep are always vital for whenever they body needs to heal itself.
Stay in bed, relax with some Netflix and let yourself be pampered by your kids, significant other or whoever you can guilt trip into being your butler for a couple of days.
Just be sure to keep your head elevated when lying in bed.
4. It’s Right Under Your Nose
Watch what you eat.
Seriously, what you eat can affect how your surgery heals (If you happen to be on a diet as well, win/win). Eating too much or too soon after treatment on your deviated septum can lead to nausea in certain patients.
You’re going to want to focus on eating food that’s cold in temperature, soft to chew and light.
5. Q-Tips…Not Just for Ears
Petroleum Jelly. In your nose.
As silly as it may feel, it’s going to come in handy. Like using a pencil to itch a scratch in a cast, you’re going to want to use a q tip (or something similarly as non-invasive) to put petroleum jelly around the inner ridge of your nostrils.
This will make sure your nose, after the deviated septum surgery, doesn’t get dry and form a hard crust as the new scar tissue heals.
If you’ve made the decision to go through with your septoplasty, you rest assured that it will be a quick and successful surgery. These 5 tips listed above to assure that your nose and septum heal successfully as well. Just remember to take care and precaution with your new nose!
Has your partner told you that your snoring is keeping them up at night?
Research shows an average 2 out of 5 women say their husbands’ snoring has forced them to sleep in another room.
That’s not good for a relationship!
Snoring disrupts the sleep of your partner and you.
Snoring problems often lead to sleepless nights and exhaustion the following day. Read about these 5 natural remedies that will help you stop snoring.
1. Keep Hydrated to Stop Snoring
Staying hydrated is a good rule of thumb in general. If you’re having snoring issues, you should consider if you’re getting enough water.
Drinking water throughout the day helps break up mucus. If you’re snoring is caused my nasal congestion this could help.
There’s no magic number for how much water you should have. Some doctors say 8 glasses a day.
When you’re thirsty, reach for water instead of dehydrating beverages. That includes coffee, tea, soda, and any caffeinated drink.
2. Don’t Drink Alcohol At Least 4 Hours Before Bed
A couple glasses of wine before bed might help knock you out fast. However, drinking alcohol before bed can affect your sleep in a number of ways.
Drinking alcohol is incredibly dehydrating. If you have a night cap before bed, make sure you’ve been drinking water all day. Have water between alcoholic beverages.
Besides being dehydrating, booze relaxes your tongue and throat. This constricts your airways and causes snoring. The same is true for sedatives.
Alcohol and sedatives can get you to sleep, but they might be waking you up.
3. Change Your Sleep Position
The cure for snoring problems could be as simple as changing your sleep position.
There are some “snoring pillows” on the market that are supposed help you stop. That’s not necessary. All you need is some extra pillows!
You can first try sleeping with your head elevated. That might keep your nasal passages from getting congested.
You can also attempt sleeping on your side. That can also help drain your congestion.
4. Gain Control of Your Allergies
If you have chronic allergies, try getting on allergy medication. That might help you stop snoring right away.
You can also try bringing a humidifier into the room.
If your nasal passages are dry and bleeding, that will cause a lot of congestion, and if you’re well hydrated, it might be that the room is just naturally dry. This is especially true if you live in a dry climate.
5. Consider Losing Weight
Gained a little weight recently?
Extra weight around your neck puts pressure on your airways. This can cause snoring or the more serious sleep apnea.
Get out a tape measure and measure your neck. Physicians say that for women, their neck circumference should be 16 inches or less. For men, 17 inches.
Even a small weight loss can take pressure off your neck and ease your breathing.
Have You Tried Any of These Tips?
Did they work? Let us know in the comments!
Have you tried everything to stop snoring and nothing works?
Make an appointment to come visit us! Our expert ENT’s are dedicated to the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea.
The Pillar Procedure is a minimally invasive, in-office surgery designed to treat disruptive snoring and mild to moderate sleep apnea. This potentially serious disorder causes repeated interruptions in breathing during sleep and can lead to a long list of issues, including daytime sleepiness and an increased risk of chronic health concerns such as depression, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes.
If you’re suffering from snoring or sleep apnea, you may wonder if the Pillar Procedure is right for you.
The Pillar Procedure is an effective treatment designed to help you stop snoring. It can also help with mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea.
In over 80% of cases of snoring or sleep apnea, soft palate issues cause or contribute to these problems. The Pillar Procedure helps address this by stiffening the soft palate, which helps reduce the vibrations that cause snoring and keeps soft palate tissue from obstructing the airways, which can cause and worsen sleep apnea. It has long-lasting results and can be performed in about 20 minutes, using only local anesthesia.
What is involved with the Pillar Procedure?
During the Pillar Procedure, three tiny implants are placed into the soft palate using a small delivery tool and without the need for incisions or stitches.
The implants are made of a material that’s been safely used for years in medical implant devices, and they can’t be seen or felt.
Over the next few weeks and months, natural tissue forms over the implants to further stiffen and add structural support to the soft palate. This helps reduce the tissue vibrations that can cause snoring and the collapse of palate tissue that can obstruct the upper airway, causing obstructive sleep apnea.
Because tissue isn’t damaged or removed, discomfort is minimal. Most patients are able to resume their normal diet and activities the same day that they receive this snoring treatment.
Why is this procedure performed?
This Pillar Procedure is performed to treat:
The intensity and loudness of snoring caused by soft palate vibrations
Mild to moderate sleep apnea caused or worsened by soft palate tissue blocking the upper airway
What are the benefits of the procedure?
The benefits of the pillar procedure include the following:
Minimally invasive procedure
Very little discomfort
Highly effective results
Performed in a single office visit
Local (not general) anesthetic used to minimize discomfort
No tissue removed or destroyed
Fast and easy recovery, with patients resuming their normal diets and activities the same day
Long-lasting results that tend to improve over the course of a few weeks or months
Significant decrease in the intensity of snoring within weeks for most patients
Improvement of sleep apnea symptoms in the majority of patients
Who is a candidate for this procedure?
If you’ve tried many different forms of treatments to help you stop snoring but they haven’t yielded good results, then the Pillar Procedure may be right for you. It might be time to look into the procedure if your quality of life, health, and relationships are being harmed as a result of your snoring and sleep apnea.
Where can I get evaluated for the Pillar Procedure?
The Atlanta Snoring Institute is dedicated to the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea. Our practice offers a full range of medical, minimally invasive, and surgical treatments, and our board-certified ear, nose, and throat doctors are dedicated to providing the best treatment options for each patient’s particular condition.
Only a qualified physician who’s been trained in the Pillar Procedure can determine if it’s right for you.
Fill out our schedule appointment form to book your evaluation today. We’ll work with you to find the best possible treatments that will help you find relief from snoring and sleep apnea.
Snoring is a sleep disorder in which a hoarse sound comes out of the mouth due to obstruction in the airway. Snoring is so common that as many as half of adults sometimes snore.
When you fall asleep, the muscles in your tongue, throat, and at the roof of your mouth all relax. This causes throat tissues to sag and obstruct your breathing. They vibrate or flutter as you breathe, creating the sound of snoring.
Snoring can be caused by problems in a number of different areas, including your nose, soft palate, uvula, or tonsils.
Other factors that can cause snoring include:
Alcohol – Consuming too much alcohol – particularly before bedtime – can have a sedative effect that relaxes the throat muscles and causes obstructions in the airway.
Excess weight – People who are overweight or obese may have bulky neck or throat tissue that narrows their airways.
Your mouth’s anatomy – If you have a low, long, thick soft palate or a uvula that’s long, your airflow may be obstructed. The same is true if you have large tonsils and/or adenoids.
Obstructed nasal airways – As you try to breathe through a stuffy nose, you create a vacuum in your throat that can result in snoring.
Structural issues in the nose – Structural issues inside the nose – such as a deviated septum (a crooked or off-center wall that separates your nostrils) can create an obstruction.
Age – As people get older, their throat muscles can tend to become weaker, which causes the surrounding tissues to sag and vibrate.
What lifestyles changes can be made to stop snoring?
If you snore, there are several lifestyle changes that you can make in order to stop snoring:
Lose extra weight
Sleep on your side instead of on your back
Raise the head of your bed (not just your pillows) by about four inches
Use nasal strips, which can help widen the nostrils and improve airflow
Avoid using sleeping pills and antihistamines before bedtime
Avoid eating heavy meals close to bedtime
A treatment plan may include lifestyle changes as well as minimally invasive or surgical treatments.
A full examination by our board-certified ENT (ear, nose, and throat) physicians who are also double board certified in Sleep Medicine will help determine the most effective treatments in your particular case.
What are the treatment options to stop snoring?
Treatment can improve snoring in some cases, but a complete cure may not always be possible. Lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, are usually recommended first.
Anti-snoring devices, such as oral appliance therapy, may also help prevent snoring. These custom-made mouth guards can help move your tongue gently forward as you sleep, helping to open your airways.
If lifestyle changes and anti-snoring devices don’t provide enough relief, surgery may be an option.
Procedural options that are often used to stop snoring include the following:
Pillar Procedure – This in-office procedure involves positioning tiny inserts in your soft palate to help provide support. No tissue is removed, so you’ll experience only minimal discomfort and have a very short recovery time – sometimes only a day.