Alaska Sleep Education Center

New Studies Show Sleep Apnea May Lead to Alzheimer's

Posted by Guest Blogger, Tara Bahrampour from The Washington Post on Sep 24, 2018 12:00:00 PM

Getting a solid night's sleep is crucial not only for feeling good the next day - there is increasing evidence that it may also protect against dementia, according to new research presented Tuesday at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference in London.

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Topics: alzheimer's, obstructive sleep apnea

Seven Signs You Might Have Sleep Apnea

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Aug 1, 2018 2:07:00 PM

Sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders afflicting approximately 20 million adults in the U.S. with an estimated 80% of cases going undiagnosed. Many people may be unaware that a sleep disorder is the underlying cause of their health problems, and others may be aware of their sleep disorder but uninformed of the severe consequences of untreated sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea is characterized by frequent breaks or pauses in breathing during sleep. There are 3 forms of sleep apnea: Central sleep apnea (CSA) in which the pauses are due to the brain failing to signal the respiratory system to breathe; obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in which breathing is interrupted by a physical blockage in the upper airways, often caused by soft tissues of the throat and tongue collapsing into the airway; and complex/mixed sleep apnea which is a combination of central sleep apnea and obstructive sleep apnea.

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Topics: losing sleep, sleep deprivation, sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, sleep problems

5 Most Effective Central Sleep Apnea Treatments

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Jul 16, 2018 5:10:00 AM

Unlike sleep disorders that are easier to diagnose and understand, central sleep apnea (CSA) can be baffling. CSA patients might not snore, may be at their ideal weight, and may have not had a history of sleep disorders yet still find themselves with the condition characterized by pauses in breathing many times during the night. Central sleep apnea is a neurological condition—in other words, the brain is not sending the correct signals to the respiratory system to keep breathing while the patient sleeps. Sometimes another medical condition causes CSA; sometimes, pain medication can lead to it; and sometimes, the apnea occurs for no known reason. Whatever the cause, treatments are available for central sleep apnea. Here five of the most effective ways to help the CSA patient:

Central Sleep Apnea Treatments

  1. Treating the medical condition that is also causing central sleep apnea. Congestive heart failure or the aftermath of a stroke can interfere with night-time breathing and lead to CSA. The solution here is simple: Treat the heart failure or the stroke and the apnea will likely subside.
  2. Cutting back or eliminating the use of opiods. Studies have proved that more powerful pain medications such as morphine, codeine and oxycodone can cause central sleep apnea. Reducing the dosage or not taking them altogether can help, but discussing this option with your doctor and with a sleep specialist is important. Pain medications do just that—help with pain, and trying to fix the apnea might not be worth additional suffering when you are awake.
  3. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). More commonly associated with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a CPAP device can also help CSA sufferers, particularly those who are recovering from heart failure. With this treatment, the patient wears a mask that continuously delivers a constant pressure of air to the lungs, thus countering any inclination the body might have to pause breathing.
  4. Bilevel positive airway pressure (BPAP). This is another treatment used for OSA sufferers that can be effective for central sleep apnea patients. Similar to a CPAP mask, a BPAP device adjusts the amount of air delivered to the lungs depending on whether the patient is inhaling or exhaling.
  5. Adaptive servo-ventilation (ASV). Yet another device that uses a mask, ASV goes one step further by continuously detecting and adjusting to the patient’s breathing needs and delivering the correct amount of oxygen. If the user is breathing fine, the device reduces the air it provides. It the patient’s breathing begins to pause, ASV increases the oxygen.
  6. Phrenic Nerve Stimulation.  Phrenic Nerve Stimulation is a new FDA-approved therapy for moderate to severe central sleep apnea in adult patients.  Phrenic nerve stimulation is delivered by a pacemaker-like implantable device that stimulates a nerve in the chest (phrenic nerve) to send signals to the diaphragm to control breathing.  It monitors respiratory signals while you sleep and helps restore normal breathing patterns. Because the device is implantable and turns on automatically during sleep, it does not require wearing a mask.


    Phrenic nerve stimulation allows normal breathing to resume by stabilizing carbon dioxide, preventing apneic events and the subsequent period of rapid breathing.


     


    Of course, the most effective treatment will vary from patient to patient, so discussing these options with a sleep specialist is crucial in determining how best to alleviate central sleep apnea.

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Topics: obstructive sleep apnea, sleep disorders, CPAP, BPAP

5 eye issues and sleep disorders:  The ocular signs of sleep apnea

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Feb 21, 2018 7:30:00 AM


According to the
American Academy of Ophthalmology, there are ocular signs that an Ophthalmologist can see which could indicate that you have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). 

As we know, OSA can be a deadly health disorder where during sleep your breathing stops periodically during the night. These lapses in breathing can occur for up to ten seconds or more and can happen hundreds of times a night. 

OSA appears to be an aggravating factor in the following 5 ocular complications:

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Topics: alaska sleep clinic, sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, sleep disorders

CPAP Therapy: How it Works, Getting Set up & Results

Posted by Jennifer Hines on Jan 24, 2018 8:06:04 PM

Alaska-CPAP-Sleep-Apnea-Snoring

 

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Topics: CPAP Masks, obstructive sleep apnea, CPAP, CPAP compliance, CPAP success, cpap accessories, Sleep

Don't let your CPAP ruin your vacation plans: Tips on electricity and travel

Posted by Julia Higginson on Aug 16, 2017 5:31:48 PM

Travel can tempt you to not be compliant with your CPAP therapy. The overwhelming idea of packing and bringing your equipment with you can make you want to skip your CPAP while you are away.

Foregoing your CPAP therapy can be dangerous. Sleep apnea will occur whether you are on your dream vacation or at home. Without your CPAP machine, you run the risk of experiencing all the unwanted and sometimes even dangerous effects of untreated sleep apnea.

The good news is that traveling with your CPAP machine doesn’t have to be burden. There are several options, including travel-sized CPAP machines that can make it easier for you to travel.

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Topics: CPAP, CPAP compliance, obstructive sleep apnea

Pregnancy and Sleep Apnea: OSA and Increasing Weight Gain

Posted by Laci Michaud on Dec 23, 2015 12:00:00 PM

Like most moms-to-be, you are probably suffering from uncomfortable restless nights and sleep deprivation and you haven’t even had the baby yet!   As if nausea, chronic back pain, fetal movement, and frequent trips to the bathroom weren't discomforting enough, many women even develop sleep disorders while pregnant including insomnia, restless leg syndrome, nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and excessive daytime sleepiness.

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Topics: sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea

Video: 5 Signs Chronic Snoring May be Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Posted by Kevin Phillips on Sep 29, 2014 6:23:00 PM

The Alaska Sleep Clinic's Educational Web Series shows you 5 reasons why your chronic snoring may be more than just a noisy nuisance.

If your snoring is loud, regular, and occuring on a nightly basis, it is possible that it may be linked to a more serious problem such as obstructive sleep apnea. If you believe that you or your bedpartner's snoring may be a cause for concern, watch the video below for more information.

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Topics: obstructive sleep apnea, Snoring

A Buyer's Guide to CPAP Machines: Manufacturers, Features, & More

Posted by Kevin Phillips on Aug 21, 2014 2:16:00 PM

 

Continuous Positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is the most common form of treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). A CPAP machine delivers pressurized air to your throat that prevents your airway from collapsing as you sleep at night. The device consists of three parts: a machine that pressurizes air from the room to your particular pressure needs, a hose to deliver the pressurized air, and a mask or nasal prongs that gently blows the air into your airways.

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Topics: CPAP compliance, obstructive sleep apnea, CPAP

CPAP Therapy: How it Works, Getting Set up, & Results

Posted by Kevin Phillips on Jul 17, 2014 3:00:00 PM

If you're reading this you're probably concerned that you, or your bed-partner, may be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea, so you're doing a little preliminary research on treatment options. You may have heard a little about continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, but are still unclear as to exactly what it is or how it works. But don't worry, you're not alone. At The Alaska Sleep Clinic we get asked daily about CPAP therapy by our patients, and we strive to give the best information possible in letting them, and you, better understand what CPAP therapy is, how it works, and the amazing results it can have on your life.

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Topics: CPAP Masks, obstructive sleep apnea, CPAP, therapies, treatment

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