Are you worried that you may have sleep apnea? Although you'll need a sleep study for a definite diagnosis, you might notice a few telltale signs if you have the condition. Dr. Jesse Tan and Dr. Jesus Tan, ear, nose and throat doctors at Tan Head and Neck Center in Long Beach, CA, diagnose and treat sleep apnea and snoring.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when you stop breathing momentarily. Breathing pauses may last several seconds and can occur hundreds of time throughout the night. Although the pauses may be short, they deprive your body and brain of oxygen and can increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, heart failure and arrhythmias. The condition can occur if your tongue falls back against your throat, blocking your airway, or if the walls of your throat become so relaxed that they collapse.
How can I tell if I have sleep apnea?
You may notice a few of these signs if you have sleep apnea:
- Loud Snoring: Snoring doesn't automatically mean that you have sleep apnea, but many people who have the condition do snore.
- Breathing Pauses: Have your family members or significant other ever noticed that you stop breathing during the night?
- Gasping for Breath: If you've ever jerked awake suddenly or woken up gasping for breath, a breathing pause may be to blame.
- Bad Moods: Irritability and depression can be symptoms of sleep apnea.
- Sleep Deprivation: Not surprisingly, it's difficult to get a good night's sleep if you suffer from sleep apnea. If you constantly feel tired when you wake up and continue to feel lethargic during the day, sleep apnea could be responsible.
- Headaches: A morning headache may also be a sleep apnea symptom.
How can my Long Branch ENT help me?
If a sleep study reveals that you have sleep apnea, your ENT can offer several solutions that may ease your symptoms, including a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine or an oral appliance. CPAP machines force a steady flow of air into your throat, which keeps the airway open. Oral appliances hold your jaw forward and prevent your tongue from blocking your airway. If excess tissues in your throat cause your breathing pauses, your ENT may recommend procedures to remove the tissue. With a surgical robot, this revolutionary procedure can remove a portion of the base of the tongue improving the airflow while you sleep. Dr. Tan is the only surgeon in the greater Long Beach area who is trained to do this highly specialized robotic procedure.
Relieve your sleep apnea symptoms with a visit to your Long Beach, CA, ENTs Dr. Jesse Tan and Dr. Jesus Tan. Call them at (562) 988-8818 to schedule an appointment.