Sleep Apnea Screening
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a breathing disorder, which occurs during sleep, due to the narrowing or total closure of the airway.
occurs when the airway becomes completely blocked and breathing stops. The brain then detects the lack of oxygen and prompts a momentary arousal to draw breath. Although OSA sufferers may experience hundreds of apnea episodes per night, they are unlikely to remember any of them. In fact, if the sufferer lives alone or sleeps separately they may not be aware of their condition, even after many years.
Snoring can be a symptom of OSA
Snoring is often no greater problem than the noise itself. However, loud snoring may be a sign of a more serious problem – OSA. Snoring is a noise created by the partial blocking of the airway. When you fall asleep your muscles relax, including those that control the tongue and throat. The soft tissue at the back of your throat can sag, narrowing the airway. Incoming air then makes the tissue at the rear roof of the mouth (the soft palate), the flap of skin hanging from the palate (uvula) and the throat vibrate – a sound we know as snoring.
Once you are properly diagnosed with OSA, one of the treatments is to fabricate an oral appliance which brings the lower jaw forward, which in turn removes the obstruction from the airway.