June 17, 2016
Sleep apnea is a disorder where breathing stops and starts during sleep. This can be a potentially dangerous disorder that can be hard to notice given the symptoms take place during sleep. What are the risk factors for sleep apnea in Durango, CO?
Three Types of Sleep Apnea
There are three types of sleep apnea:
- Obstructive: This is the most common form involving relaxed throat muscles.
- Central: Your brain doesn’t send signals to your respiratory system to continue breathing.
- Complex: This is a combination of central and obstructive sleep apnea.
What Are the Obstructive Risk Factors?
There is a longer list of risk factors for the obstructive form of sleep apnea, but here are some of the most common:
- Narrowed Airways: A naturally narrow throat or even enlarged tonsils can be the culprit.
- Excess Weight: Obese individuals are at four times the risk for sleep apnea. Fat deposits can serve to restrict airways.
- Nasal Congestion: Whether through allergies or an anatomical issue, difficulty breathing through your nose can cause sleep apnea.
- Family History: Genetics can play a big role in developing this ailment.
What Are the Central Risk Factors?
Some of these risk factors also increase risk for complex sleep apnea:
- Narcotic Prescriptions: Opioids are known to increase the risk of this type of sleep apnea. In particular, long acting narcotic prescriptions increase your risk of developing apnea.
- Stroke: This occurrence increases your risk of both central and complex sleep apnea.
- Cardiovascular Disorders: Congestive heart failure along with other heart disease can increase your risk.
- Age: Age increase your risk for all types of sleep apnea.
Would you like to discuss your sleep apnea with a general dentist? Call us at 970.247.2677 and set up an appointment with Dr. Miner. Ask about diagnostic tests, relate your symptoms and inquire about possible treatments that will work for your symptoms and type of apnea.