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Sleep Disorders
 
All About Sleep Disorders
Who is Affected By Sleep Disorders
Who Treats Sleep Disorders
What Happens At A Sleep Lab
 
Types of Sleep Disorders
Sleep Apnea
What is Sleep Apnea
What Causes Sleep Apnea
Treating Sleep Apnea
Sleep Apnea in Children
Insomnia
What is Insomnia
What Causes Insomnia
Treating Insomnia
Sleep Walking
What is Sleep Walking
What Causes Sleep Walking
Treating Sleep Waking
Hypersomnia: Daytime Sleepiness
What is Hypersomnia
What Causes Hypersomnia
Treating Hypersomnia
Sleep Paralysis
What is Sleep Paralysis
What Causes Sleep Paralysis
Treating Sleep Paralysis
REM Sleep Behavior Disorder
What is REM Sleep
What Causes REM Sleep
Treating REM Sleep
Narcolepsy
What is Narcolepsy
What Causes Narcolepsy
Treating Narcolepsy
Restless Leg Syndrome
What is Restless Leg Syndrome
What Causes Restless Leg Syndrome
Treating Restless Leg Syndrome
Nightmares
What are Nightmares
What Causes Nightmares
Treating Nightmares
Snoring
What is Snoring
What Causes Snoring
Treating Snoring
Sleep Deprivation
What is Sleep Deprivation
What Causes Sleep Deprivation
Treating Sleep Deprivation
Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders
What are Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders
What Causes Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders
Treating Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders
Dentistry and Sleep Disorders
Dentists’ Role in Managing Sleep Disorders
Dental Treatments for Sleep Disorders
Advantages of Dental Treatments
 
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 What Causes Sleep Apnea

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Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when you stop breathing while sleeping due to something blocking your airway. The blockage can be caused by your uvula relaxing into the back of your throat or by having a weak jaw muscle or tongue. A blockage of the airway behind the nose can also lead to sleep apnea. Since the body doesn't receive any oxygen when the back of the throat is blocked the brain is forced to wake up, otherwise the you would suffocate. Obstructive sleep apnea is more common and is not as dangerous as central sleep apnea.

The other form of this sleep disorder, central sleep apnea is caused when the brain fails to send a signal to tell the body to breathe. This is caused by some type of medical condition in the respiratory system. Central sleep apnea usually occurs in individuals (infants or adults) with heart disease, cardiovascular disease, or other congenital disorders. It can also occur due to certain medications, drugs, or altitude changes. Central sleep apnea is a serious condition that requires prompt medical attention by a qualified sleep physician, sleep lab technician or other sleep specialist.

Sometimes individuals will present with a sleep disorder that is a combination of both obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea. This is known as mixed sleep apnea and is diagnosed as the result of sleep testing by sleep doctors in a sleep lab, just like other forms of sleep apnea are diagnosed.

Although sleep apnea is its own sleeping disorder, it can cause other sleep disorders such as a sleep deprivation and oxygen deprivation. About one in five people who suffer from sleep apnea also suffer from depression. Depression can become worse due to sleep apnea so be sure that your sleep physician and any other doctors involved in the treatment of your sleep apnea are aware of other problems you are having with sleep, depression, or any other general health concerns.

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