Understanding Apnea-Hypopnea Index (AHI)

Posted by Darian Dozier on Aug 16, 2023 9:30:00 AM

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common sleep disorder. It involves several episodes of apnea throughout the night, or episodes of complete cessation in breathing. To receive this diagnosis, one must undergo a sleep study where one of the parameters is apnea-hypopnea index, or AHI. It's important to understand what this is and what is measures so you're more knowledgeable about your sleep study results. 

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Overview of Hypopnea

Posted by Darian Dozier on Aug 14, 2023 8:56:00 AM

At night are supposed to breathe anywhere from 12-20 times per minute. When we breathe less than that rte, our brain does not receive the appropriate amount of oxygen that it needs. These breaths need to be deep and filling our lungs about 6 liters, which is the average volume of air in our lungs following an inhalation.  

When we have a really shallow breathing episode, that is called hypopnea. Any time we breathe slower than what we are supposed to, that is called bradypnea. Both of these put our bodies at risk for receiving a suboptimal amount of oxygen at night. Too many episodes of hypopnea mixed with apnea - episodes of complete cessation of breathing - can lead to a diagnosis of sleep apnea. 

Sleep apnea is a serious sleeping disorder that requires immediate treatment to avoid long-term sequelae. Continue reading to learn more about hypopnea, and determine if you need further work up for your sleep challenges.

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Possible Causes of Apnea in Children

Posted by Darian Dozier on Apr 10, 2023 10:24:00 AM

Apnea is the term for brief pauses in breathing. In children, these events can be common, and very scary for parents. It's important to know common causes of apnea in children, so parents and practitioners know when to be concerned, and when not to be. Pauses in breathing, cyanosis (turning blue), unresponsiveness, are all signs to look out for and can determine the severity of the issue. Here are possible causes of apnea in children and neonates.  

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Taping Lips - Does it Work or No?

Posted by Darian Dozier on Jan 27, 2023 7:35:00 AM

The new trend on TikTok is for one to tape their lips while sleeping. Users have claimed that they have noticed many benefits of this practice, including:

  • More energy 
  • Sharper jawline 
  • Better skin, mood, and digestion 
  • Reduced brain fog 
  • Less cavities, gum disease and bad breath
  • Strengthened immune system

The benefits of mouth taping involve taking a piece of skin-friendly tape and placing them over both lips to keep your mouth closed throughout the night have recently become a major media sensation. 

But is it safe? Does it work? Does science support this practice? Continue reading to learn more about mouth taping and what experts are saying. 

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Arrhythmia and Sleep Apnea

Posted by Darian Dozier on Jan 18, 2023 5:05:00 PM

Sleep apnea is a common sleeping disorder that involves brief cessation in breathing called apneas. These apneic events can be due to an obstruction (the most common) or a brain stem disorder (central sleep apnea). Although these brief pauses only last for a few seconds, they are still quite concerning to bed partners and are detrimental to your health. 

In this article, we are going to talk about arrhythmias and their connection with sleep apnea. Arrhythmias are just one of the ways that sleep apnea can negatively affect one's health. Although one of the lesser known causes of arrhythmias, they are serious enough that any risk factors must be addressed as soon as possible. Continue reading for more information. 

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Improving Sleep Apnea Symptoms through Diet

Posted by Darian Dozier on Dec 30, 2022 6:12:00 AM

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects 1 and 5 people worldwide. It is a condition characterized by loud snoring, but is actually a very serious disorder. Sleep apnea involves brief pauses in breathing throughout the night. This can have severe consequences for the body, as oxygen levels drop constantly throughout the night. 

This lack of oxygen can lead to inflammation, morning headaches, and a decreased quality of life. Sleep apnea also causes disrupted sleep throughout the night as the body wakes up to begin breathing again. This may be below the level of consciousness of the person with sleep apnea, so they wake up exhausted and have no idea why. 

The gold standard treatment for sleep apnea is a continuous positive airway pressure machine, or a CPAP. It blows air into the back of the throat to keep the muscles from collapsing so the airway is open. Although it is a great treatment, it can be uncomfortable throughout the night. However, there may be a way to further improve sleep apnea symptoms - through diet. Continue reading to learn more about the study that showed how diet can improve sleep apnea, even without significant weight loss.    

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Sleep Apnea Symptoms You May Not Know About

Posted by Darian Dozier on Dec 9, 2022 4:29:00 PM

Curious about if you have sleep apnea or not? Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that affects many sleepers. It can be a serious sleep disorder with adverse consequences that can have a severe impact on your life. Therefore, it is important to be able to recognize the signs and symptoms so you can get the help you need promptly. 

There are certain symptoms that are common to sleep apnea. These include snoring and excessive daytime fatigue without knowing why. Most individuals with sleep apnea don't know they have it unless someone else can attest to their snoring. But, if you don't have that person, or if they don't think you're snoring is anything out of the ordinary, then you may want to look out for these other signs!  

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What is CPAP Dry Mouth and How to Prevent It

Posted by Darian Dozier on Nov 14, 2022 4:59:00 AM

Obstructive Sleep Apnea, or OSA, is a common sleep disorder where individuals have brief pauses in breathing due to a blockage of the airway. This blockage can be caused by a large tongue that has relaxed and covering the airway, or the muscles in the back of the throat that have relaxed and are also covering the airway. 

The mainstay of treatment is a continuous positive airway pressure, or a CPAP, machine. This machine blows air into the back of your throat to prevent the muscles from collapsing and keeping your airway open. It consists of a mask that goes over your nose and your mouth that is attached by a hose to a machine that delivers this air. 

CPAP machines are very important because OSA can cause a host of health problems including obesity, hypertension, and reduced sleep. Those with OSA can develop excessive daytime sleepiness and the risk of developing it is increased by being overweight, having a large neck circumference, smoking, and being male, to name a few. 

Although CPAPs are great, they often come up with some uncomfortable side effects. A common side effect is dry mouth. Continue reading to find out how to avoid this side effect. 

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Common CPAP Side Effects

Posted by Darian Dozier on Nov 7, 2022 5:07:00 AM

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a sleep disorder that affects many people. It is characterized by many pauses in breathing throughout the night that cause your body to wake up to begin breathing again. These cessations are caused by a blockage to your airway, most likely by a large tongue that has slid to the back of your mouth, or by the relaxation of the muscles in the back of your throat. 

This narrowing of space makes it hard for you to breathe and can lead to snoring, excessive daytime sleepiness, and feeling like you did not get enough rest. OSA can also lead to hypertension, obesity, heart disease, and many other diseases. It is more common in men, those with larger neck circumferences, overweight/obese individuals, and those who smoke. 

The current standard treatment for OSA is a continuous positive airway pressure, or a CPAP machine. It blows air to stop the muscles in the back of your throat from collapsing so that way you continue breathing throughout the night. Even though it can provide immense relief, it still comes with its fair share of side effects. Continue reading to learn about what to expect with a CPAP. 

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Micro CPAP Devices

Posted by Darian Dozier on Oct 24, 2022 11:44:00 AM

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects nearly a billion people in the world. It is a sleep disorder that involves cessations of breathing throughout the night. These pauses can significantly disrupt sleep, leading to excessive daytime sleepiness, high blood pressure, and other health issues. 

The mainstay treatment for OSA is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) which is a large mask that fits over the nose and mouth and provides enough pressure to keep the airway from collapsing. Due to the size of the CPAP machine, and the tubes and discomfort, many individuals may choose to not use a CPAP, which can worsen and prolong their disease. 

However, new technology may offer something a little more comfortable: Micro CPAP. We are going to review what they are and how they work so you can talk with your doctor to see if it's the best option for you. 

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