Articles by Snoring-Aid.com Staff

How are Sinusitis and Obstructive Sleep Apnea Related?

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Prior to getting into the link between sinusitis as well as sleep apnea, it is important to get an understanding of what sinusitis is and how it affects the human body. In simple terms, sinusitis can be defined as the swelling of sinus cavities, nose, and cheeks. In the sinuses that are healthy, a thin layer of mucous and small hairs known as cilia line the surfaces, which helps to both trap as well as push pollutants and bacteria, and eventually drains through the small openings to the nasal cavity.

If your sinuses are healthy, the mucus formed in the sinuses will get cleared every ten minutes. However, when mucus production turns excess disrupting its normal clearing from the nose, it builds up and leads to swelling in the nose, and thereby sinusitis. People with the sinus infection experience several symptoms, comprising headache, sinus pressure, facial pain, as well as fatigue. It is considered chronic when one case of sinusitis lasts 6 weeks or more and even if a person develops the condition over 4 times in a year.

Besides the symptoms experienced during the day, chronic sinusitis also affects the sleeping patterns of the patient, and that brings us to Obstructive Sleep Apnea – what it is and in which way it is related to sinusitis.

Sinusitis and Obstructive Sleep Apnea

People who snore frequently tend to be Obstructive Sleep Apnea patients too, as loud snoring is one of its symptoms. In fact, it is the main symptom of sleep apnea, a sleep disorder characterized by loud snoring during sleep. Precisely, Obstructive Sleep Apnea is categorized as a sleep-disordered breathing condition. When the soft tissues in the mouth relax during sleep, it then causes partial blockages in the upper airway and induces the snoring sound.

Apart from that, Obstructive Sleep Apnea also causes the person to momentarily wake up gasping for breath. The pattern of gasping for breath can last from a few seconds to even an hour, occurring intermittently, in sleep. Its severity depends on the breathing obstruction or pattern.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea can be mild to moderate or even severe. If it is not serious with snoring remaining loud during sleep, you can seek anti snoring devices to advance the lower jaw and get a free flow of air. This is because the snoring sound is produced when the air rushes past the blocked airway and vibrates the soft tissues in the throat.

There are several factors, that play into the development of Obstructive Sleep Apnea and nasal and sinus issues are an element in that. Apparently, a breathing obstruction can also occur due to sinusitis. When sinus cavities cause draining difficulties, leading to chronic or intermittent sinusitis, it could be the sign of an underlying anatomical problem. The same nasal issue could be causing the partial or full blockages in the airway and in turn leading to the sleep-disordered breathing.

How Much Sleep Compatibility you Have with your Partner

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It can be hard living with a partner, who snores at night and keeps you from enjoying deep sleep. Aside from this and other sleep disorders, mismatched nighttime habits too can drive a couple apart over time. One of the best ways to combat this is to make sure the two of you are sleep compatible. Signs that you are not include one of you preferring to turn in much later than the other, and then tossing and turning on the bed until morning.

Sleep Incompatibility

The National Sleep Foundation has found that three in every four adults wake up multiple times in the night, or cause their partner to by snoring loudly and relentlessly. A survey showed that over half of the women in the country between the ages of 18 and 64 slept poorly over three nights a week. Most restless sleepers felt the effects of on the next day, with close to half of them blaming it for their inadequate performance while awake. The one thing commonly observed was that one of the partners had a snoring habit.

Sleep experts agree on snoring being a serious health problem, in no small part due to its tendency to bring in sleep apnea, as well as disrupt the sleep of couples across the country. However, simply resolving the sleep disorder with a snoring mouth guard would not make the problem of bedtime hurdles disappear. Even after you stop snoring at night, there are many other factors in play, such as disparities in body temperature, personal preferences, etc. The latter includes everything from who switches off the light, to how much of the blanket each person uses. Lack of a system that works for both parties can lead to many problems, including marital and sexual.

Age

Sleep incompatibility gets worse the older you get. Older couples are generally less concerned with sexual intercourse, and more bothered by snoring and bathroom visits after they hit the sack. Sometimes, partners cannot pick up each other’s slack, and eventually grow to wish they did not have to share a bed. Moreover, women have hot flashes when they are older, and that does not help matters at all.

Insomnia

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Sleep Apnea In Partner

Even when not troubled by sleep disorders, many couples fail to find the kind of sleep that everyone wishes for. Most people take sleep for granted, and many end up suffering from insomnia. In such cases, the answer to what is keeping you awake may lie no further than the other side of the bed. It becomes vital to ask yourself what came first: marital problems or sleep problems. To find out which, ask your partner what they are willing to do to overcome your sleep incompatibility.

Sleeping Apart

A lion’s share of couples around the globe part ways at night as a means to get past sleep incompatibility. This has become so common a part of the typical modern lifestyle that architects often accommodate two master bedrooms when designing houses. Over half of the custom-made houses in the country have contained master bedrooms.

Cuddling

This is option is more mutually endearing, and while it does not bring the couple the best sleep they can have individually, it fosters intimacy and lets partners grow better used to one another. Many times, people overlook all annoyances just to be in proximity with their spouses.

Sleep Apnea

Snoring may seem superficial to the casual observer, but it is important to remember that it commonly leads to sleep apnea, where the person actually stops breathing for as long as several minutes. This can happen multiple times during the night, and always raises the risk of suffering from stroke, high blood pressure, and heart attack. Overcoming this issue is a long process, which usually involves wearing a medically prescribed CPAP device before going to sleep.

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Sleep Incompatibility In Adults

This in itself can be highly tiresome, because a typical CPAP machine includes tubes, masks, and a fan. The fans bring air pressure that causes the person’s tongue to move forward, removing the block formed in front of the throat. This allows more air to pass and for the person to breathe more easily.

Support from a spouse can be integral in getting a person to wear their CPAP device through the entirety of their sleep. Studies have found that men undergoing CPAP therapy follow through better when they have their wives in bed with them. If the condition is severe, spousal support may be called for outside the bedroom as well.

Some goals such as weight loss, diet change, and long walks can be achieved more easily if the patient sees they have their partner there with them through the whole thing. Emotional support is easy to underestimate in such cases, but people working alone to dispel a sleeping disorder generally do not fare as good as those that have their spouses actively supporting them.

The Compelling Reasons Why Sleep Apnea in Women Should Be Diagnosed

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Sleep Apnea In Women

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) happens when one snores loudly during sleep. The main symptom of OSA occurs when the soft tissue in the throat’s back relaxes, blocks the upper airway, and causes the snoring sound. Apnea is commonly seen in men and women. Since some of the health factors such as obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure are found more in men than women, there is a perception that women do not experience apnea as frequently as men do.

While that may be partly true, plenty of women do experience snoring and apnea, while some has the risk factors that can lead to the sleep disorder. Below are 3 things, which one may not know about OSA in women. Knowing about this health condition in detail will lead you to take a sleep test and try the remedies to stop snoring and get a relief during sleep. If you feel that you have any of the symptoms that pose a risk factor apnea, consult a doctor as soon as possible, and they will suggest you the right apnea and snoring remedies.

Apnea in Women is Often Misdiagnosed

More attention has been given to the health impacts of the sleep disorder for men than in women. This is largely due to medicine, which has created a perception that apnea patients are middle-aged adults who are obese and frequently snorers. The physicians who are into apnea are trained to check symptoms such as loud snoring, breathing cessations, and daytime sleeping, since apnea has been studied more in men than in women.

As women tend to experience peculiar symptoms, the sleep disorder is often overlooked in them. That is because it is tough to diagnose apnea in women as certain conditions can be mistaken for common health concerns. They include depression, cardiac diseases, hypertension, and menopausal changes.

The Apnea Symptoms in Women Differ to Men

Obviously, a man’s body differs to that of a woman and so do some physiological and biological factors. The symptoms of apnea that differ in women as opposed to men include everything from restless leg syndrome to weight gain, which occurs during pregnancy period, and things such as anxiety.

Apnea Cause Complications during Pregnancy

Pregnancy can worsen the apnea episodes during sleep. As pregnancy can cause sleep deprivations and exhaustion, it can be tricky for doctors to tell if the symptoms are related to apnea or not. Pregnant women have to fathom things such as high blood pressure, gestational diabetes, or preeclampsia, so OSA can cause more complications to the health during the pregnancy period. For instance, pregnancy-related apnea is linked to the said conditions, preterm delivery and even low birth weight leading to intensive care for them.

How Sleep Apnea Leads to Ear Problems

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If you are an Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) patient, then there is a high chance that you may have an ear problem too. A person having no sleep disorder may have ear related issues caused due to cold or allergy only for few days. However, if they have the condition of OSA, the inflammation in ears can last for many weeks or even months. This is because the inflammation in the throat or nose may cause swelling, which can increase obstructions leading to the stomach juices moving up the throat or nose, including Eustachian tube area in the ear.

Inflammation in the nose and ear can be caused due to many reasons like allergies, viral colds, acid reflux, and weather changes. A simple allergy or cold can affect your ear as well. In most cases, you may only experience two or three days of discomfort. However, in some situations, ears may get stuffed for weeks. The vacuum pressure thus created may cause fluids to accumulate in there, thereby giving rise to serous otitis media. This can then lead to a bacterial infection.

In addition, frequent arousals and obstructions in sleep during the nighttime may lead to an imbalance in the involuntary nervous system in which the nose becomes very sensitive to weather changes. This is known as chronic rhinitis. It is even seen that people who use a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device to deal with OSA may get air blown into middle ears by means of pressure. This issue is quite a frustrating one and difficult to completely cure.

How to Treat the Condition

If you have sleep apnea and experiencing issues in the ear, first make sure to treat the OSA problem properly. When the CPAP pressure is very low or if the mouthpiece is not calibrated properly, you may have frequent arousals and disruptions in sleep. So make sure that your health care provider sees to it that there are no such issues.

If you have a chronic stuffy nose, there is a chance that may create a downstream vacuum effect that allows your tongue to fall back often while deep sleeping due to the relaxation of muscles. Due to this, nasal passageways can be either inflamed, narrow, or both, so check that your nasal breathing is not obstructed.

Moreover, make sure not to eat three to four hours before bedtime so that the inflammation is lowered. Two to three apnea episodes per hour is common in OSA patients, and that is enough to suction up stomach juices to your throat. Therefore, you need keep the juice and acidity volume as low as possible.

About Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Obstructive Sleep Apnea

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD) is a medical condition that affects the mental health of a person after the occurrence of an unfortunate incident. For instance, consider rape, assault, witnessing gory accidents, murder, serious injury, threats of death, etc. People suffering from PTSD must be treated as soon as possible as they tend to show suicidal tendency as well in extreme cases.

A health care expert usually analyzes the symptoms exhibited by the person in order to confirm the disorder. Some of the red flags that you can see in victims of PTSD include:

  • Recurring flashbacks of a traumatic incident
  • Frequent wake ups from sleep
  • Numbing a hurtful memory
  • Irritability and moodiness
  • Lack of concentration

It is quite common for such symptoms to occur in people who faced any traumatic incident and it will diminish with time. In case it prevails for more than a month, the person is more likely to suffer from PTSD. According to a recent study, prisoners who are subjected to harsh treatments will be victims of PTSD in most cases.

How PTSD Can Lead to OSA

PSTD patients are prone to sleep disorders that include nightmares, excessive sleepiness or lack of sleep, recurrent dreams, etc. It is even reported that Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a common disorder in patients who are suffering from the advanced stage of PSTD.

As per a recent study, OSA is detected in more than 70% of people who are diagnosed with PSTD. Hence, it is appropriate to take PSTD patients to a health care provider and assess for OSA before taking additional medications for their sleep-related issues. In case a person fails to get effective treatment for OSA, it will negatively affect the treatment and recovery process for PSTD as well.

OSA or is sleeping disorder in which the throat muscles of an affected person relax intermittently and block the airway. As a result, the patient will experience a lack of breath during sleep and wake up with a gasp. Using anti snoring devices help to tackle the sleep disorder to a great extent, as such devices move the jaw forward during sleep to keep the airway open and allow uninterrupted breathing.

Commonly, a CPAP machine is used to alleviate the symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. However, people with PSTD do not respond to a CPAP therapy that well. This will make it even challenging to treat people who are victims of both OSA and PTSD. Consulting with a health care provider is the best line of defence against the health issues.

How Common is Sleep Apnea in Women

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Sleep Apnea in Women

Several people firmly believe that the sleeping disorders such as sleep apnea and snoring predominantly affect men. This conclusion was made based on the results obtained from early clinical researches and epidemiological studies that were conducted on male patients only. The studies, which were conducted during the 1970’s and 1980’s, stated that the male to female ratio of people falling prey to sleep apnea was approximately 60 to 1. However, recent studies conducted by sleep analysts revealed a shocking conclusion that sleep apnea and snoring is not that rare in women as they are believed to be.

Latest studies conducted on sleep disorders, by evaluating both male and female patients, revealed that the male to female ratio of sleep apnea is approximately 2 to 1. It was also seen that most men who suffer from sleep apnea and snoring usually seek the help of health care providers if they are unable to get a good night’s sleep due to these sleeping disorders. However, approximately 50 percent of women who suffer from such sleeping disorders, particularly snoring, prefer not to report their symptoms to health care providers due to embarrassment or shame.

The study further revealed that the condition of sleep apnea was undiagnosed in approximately 90 percent women. Still, women who were suffering from mild to moderate sleep apnea did not report any symptoms of the sleeping disorder to their health care provider.

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea in Women

It is crucial to note that the symptoms of sleep apnea and snoring are the same in both men and women. However, some women also experience additional symptoms such as depression, tension, insomnia, headaches, and daytime fatigue. It is also seen that pregnant women tent to show these symptoms more.

If you are women who are experiencing snoring or symptoms of sleep apnea, then you should immediately get in touch with a health care provider to get medical assistance. This is because snoring and sleep apnea can lead to serious health disorders if left untreated.

Your health care provider will initially ask you to make a few lifestyle changes and ask you to do a few mouth exercises to stop snoring. However, if that does not work, the sleep specialist will advise you to use medically approved anti snoring aids. Using a snoring mouth guard while you are sleeping will allow you to effectively fight against the symptoms of snoring and sleep apnea, in turn allowing you to have a peaceful night’s sleep.

Can your Pillow Cause you to Snore?

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Most people cannot sleep at night without a pillow. However, this small thing can cause problems such as snoring. Does that seem like a stretch? Well then, consider these factors.

Comfort

Sleeping in an uncomfortable position can leave you with a sore neck and sleepiness come morning, not to mention a snoring habit over the long run. This is sometimes because the pillow is not comfortable to rest your head on. It is vital to get a pillow that goes well with your sleeping positions. If it is hot, avoid using a memory foam pillow, because the material traps heat.

Do not stay dehydrated, or wait until you feel tired in your bones to go to bed. Aside from inviting snoring, these things can leave you unable to notice if the pillow is in fact right for you.

Sleep Position

No special pillow exists which can cause you to simply stop snoring overnight. Still, it can affect the way your head rests, which in turn affects whether or not you will probably snore. Do not sleep on your back, or tilt your head to the front. In fact, do not sleep in any position that overly relaxes your mouth and throat.

Side sleeping is one of the basic snoring solutions. However, it is hard to break a lifetime habit of sleeping on your back, so this will take time. Your pillow should be able to help get through the worst of it. Some pillows can allow your head to be tilted backwards, while others support the neck during sleep. None of these changes is what you would call comfortable though, at least not initially.

Pollen and Allergens

Pillows can harbor dust mites that cause allergic reactions in many people. This problem can occur due to outdoor pollen as well. Your nose is not designed to block these particles when you sleep, which means they will enter and cause irritation, sometimes resulting in inflammation.

Short-term snoring can also be caused by respiratory infections, which result from germs inside the house. So what should you do? Clean, of course. Vacuum the room, wash the bedding, clean the curtains, and dust the corners. Do this weekly if your place normally gets dirty really fast. If your pet sheds a lot of fur, do not let it enter the bedroom. This will reduce the concentration of allergens. Lastly, replace your pillows every six months or sooner.

Common Types of Intrinsic Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders

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Types Of Sleeping Disorders

Circadian rhythm cycle is actually the biological clock in one’s body that controls the sleep and wakefulness period of a person. Any disruption to the circadian rhythm can result in various sleeping disorders that may ultimately result in snoring and sleep apnea or other serious health issues. In some cases, it can happen the other way round as well. That is, snoring can lead to circadian rhythm sleep disorders and other health problems. In such cases, you can use any of the snoring devices recommended by a physician to alleviate it.

Categories of Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders

Intrinsic and extrinsic disorders are two types of circadian rhythm sleep disorders. The former one is actually an internal health condition, in which the biological clock of a person is different from that of others. In this case, the person may either go to sleep way too early or late when compared to others. This will get worse every other day.

In case of the latter, it is circumstantial. That is, external factors like darkness, light, stress related to family, job, work, etc. Similarly, uncommon working schedules or snoring issues can also contribute to this. Below are some of the common intrinsic circadian rhythm sleep disorders.

Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome (DSPS)

In this disorder, the affected person feels exhausted at later hours when compared to others, which makes him/her stay awake throughout the night. As a result, the person will wake up late in the morning. In such patients, the melatonin production will occur at least two or more hours later, which keeps them awake at night. Furthermore, along with a delayed production, the melatonin hardly lasts the same amount of time as in normal people, making it hard for the affected persons to wake up early.

Note that teenagers and young adults are mainly prone to DSPS and this may reflect in their academic performance as well. People suffering from DSPS often encounter other disorders such as depression, excessive daytime sleepiness, late night insomnia, regular snoring, etc.

Advanced Sleep Phase Syndrome (ASPS)

In this case, the affected person will start feeling sleepy earlier in the evening making him/her sleep earlier than others, which is just the opposite of DSPS. However, the melatonin production is same as that of DSPS patients. Still, the sufferers tend to wake up two hours earlier in this case.

In some cases of ASPS, the patients will wake up two hours late. Here, the side effects include early morning insomnia, depression, insufficient sleep, excessive daytime sleepiness, etc. It is noted that ASPS is commonly seen in elderly people, where as only 1% of young adults are diagnosed with the sleep disorder.

An Ultimate Guide to Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders

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Snoring is one of the most common health issues these days. Fortunately, there are many snoring devices available now, with which you can stop snoring up to a great extent. Note that snoring can also lead to various other sleep disorders. For instance, interruption of circadian rhythm is one of the major sleeping disorders that can be triggered by heavy snoring. Below are some in-depth details about circadian rhythm and related health issues.

What is Circadian Rhythm?

Circadian rhythm is a biological clock in your body that controls the timing that a body needs to rest and be energetic; that is, the sleep and wakefulness cycles. The main factor that contributes to this is the presence and absence of natural light in a day.

A circadian rhythm cycle mainly functions by means of the hypothalamus. Here, there is a group of cells known as Suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) that is connected to the optic nerve of a person. This will help the biological clock to detect the presence and absence of light. Apart from this, SCN also plays a crucial role in controlling most of the body function such as heart rate, body temperature, hormones, etc.

Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders

There are mainly two types of sleeping disorders related to circadian rhythm, intrinsic and extrinsic. The former one is present in one’s body by default, whereas the latter one is circumstantial. In case of intrinsic disorders, the sleep cycle will be entirely different from that of others. The main reasons for this can be the early or late sleeping and wake-up timings.

In case of extrinsic sleep disorders, the factors may depend on the circumstances, such as job, light, pressure, travel, etc., which are the common things that disrupt the sleep of a person. Some of the most common circadian rhythm sleep disorders include:

  • Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome (DSPS)
  • Advanced Sleep Phase Syndrome
  • Non-24-Hour-Sleep-Wake Syndrome
  • Jet Lag
  • Irregular Sleep-Wake Rhythm
  • Shift-Work Sleep Disorder

The Treatment

Behavioral therapy is one of the non-surgical treatment methods used to cure circadian rhythm sleep disorders. Here, a patient will have to maintain regular timing for sleep and arousals, avoid taking naps during morning time and nicotine or caffeine before bedtime, reduce the use of electronic gadgets, must do exercises regularly, etc.

Another treatment method is the Bright Light Therapy. Here, a light box that emits high-intensity light is used to delay or advance the bedtime of a person. For this, the patient will have to sit under the light box for a set time depending on the intensity of the sleeping disorder.

Apart from these, certain medications such as melatonin can also be used to regulate the sleep cycles. Yet if snoring is the only thing that is disturbing your sleep cycle, the usage of appropriate snoring devices is recommended to counter the health issue.

Why Parents Should Be Concerned about Snoring in Children

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Snoring In Children

It is a widely known and accepted fact that snoring is one of the most common sleeping disorders, which affect millions of individuals all over the world. A recent survey conducted by experts in the field of medical science confirmed that approximately 50 percent of all adults snore, at least occasionally. Although the percentage of kids who snore is estimated to be a lot lesser, it is still a serious matter of concern. So, if your child is suffering from snoring, then it is best to get medical assistance as soon as possible.

An experienced pediatric otolaryngologist, Brandon Hopkins, said, “On average, just one in 10 kids snore. But that doesn’t necessarily indicate a problem.” He also stressed on the fact that the major culprit behind snoring in kids is obstructive or excessive tissues in their throat. “In children, large tonsils and adenoids are often a source of bulky tissue in the throat and the snoring,” he said.

Some of the other common causes of snoring in children include:

  • Sleep apnea
  • Deviated septum
  • Asthma
  • Throat infections
  • Allergies

Snoring issues in children usually gets better without medical treatments. However, in some rare cases, snoring in kids might lead to some serious health issues. If that is the case, then you will need to invest in a sleep apnea mouth guard to deal with the problem. Below are a few signs that indicate that the snoring issue in your kid is a bit serious.

  • He/she snores on most nights
  • You are able to frequently hear the sound of your child’s snoring
  • The snoring sound is too noisy
  • The mouth of your kid remains open when he/she is asleep
  • You are able to hear your child gasping for breath when they are asleep

Speaking on snoring in kids, Hopkins said, “It’s not common in kids, but when sleep apnea is severe, it can pose health risks for the heart and lungs.” He also advised parents to “track how many nights of the week the snoring occurs and whether it happens frequently, or only occasionally, during the night.”

If the snoring issues in your kid are due to the presence of large adenoids or tonsils, then the health care provider may recommend surgery. As said, you can also use a sleep apnea mouth guard initially to see if it helps to ease the symptoms of snoring. However, consulting a doctor is always recommended.