Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) is most common in middle-aged men and postmenopausal women. It is a breathing disorder that affects
people during sleep, usually without their knowing.
Normally during sleep, the muscles which control the tongue and soft palate hold
the upper airway open.
If these muscles relax, the airway becomes narrower, often causing snoring and breathing difficulties.
If they relax too much the airway can become completely blocked. This obstruction is aggravated if the tonsils are enlarged.
The most common symptom is loud snoring. They stop breathing in between the snores, repeatedly during sleep. These disruptions
deprive the person of sleep and oxygen.
They feel tired during the day, may fall asleep at work, while driving the car, while reading
or watching television. They are often irritable. More serious consequences include depression, hypertension, heart condition, sexual
problems, memory lapses and morning headaches.
Sleep apnoea is diagnosed by a Sleep Study. It is a very simple, safe and painless procedure. Various leads are attached to your skin
to record what is happening when you sleep, like chest movement, heart rate, oxygen saturation, airflow and brain waves.
- Weight loss in the obese person
- Avoid sedative and alcohol
- CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) is the most effective non-surgical treatment. It uses a small mask that fits over the nose or both nose and mouth. It produces a steady light air flow under a small pressure which prevents airway collapse. This allows normal breathing during sleep.
Surgical treatment for OSA needs to be individualised to address the anatomical areas of obstruction
Oral appliance which shifts lower jaw forward to open the bite slightly and hence the airway