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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The Relationship Between OSA and Anxiety

Posted by Darian Dozier on Feb 20, 2023 6:27:00 AM

Anxiety and sleep apnea are two distinct disorders that can have a connection, making both of them worse. Sleep apnea is a common medical condition that causes you to stop breathing momentarily throughout the night. Your body has to wake up in order to begin breathing again. The cessation is normally caused by a blockage in airway caused by relaxed muscles or a large tongue. 

Anxiety is a mental health disorder that involves excessive worry and fear over rational and irrational causes. Anxiety can be debilitating and interfere with individuals' ability to live life. 

Both anxiety and sleep apnea are able to disrupt sleep and cause major sleep deprivation. Sleep deprivation, can inturn, make both of those conditions worse. The entire situation is a terrible spiral, that if well-controlled, can truly lead to a much better quality of sleep. 

Continue reading to find out more about this connection, and how you can overcome this. 

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Topics: Sleep Apnea, anxiety

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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Central Sleep Apnea in Children

Posted by Darian Dozier on Sep 7, 2022 7:03:00 AM

Sleep apnea occurs when one stops breathing throughout the night, taking small pauses, and then begins gasping for air to begin breathing again. It can be very disruptive to one's sleep, and very concerning for those who observe this sleep pattern. Sleep apnea can be divided into central (CSA) and obstructive (OSA). Obstructive occurs when something in the back of the throat prevents one from breathing. Those who are overweight, have a wide neck, and males are at increased risk for developing OSA. 

CSA can be a bit more alarming because it's an issue with the brain, and not with the muscles in the back of the neck. We are going to talk about CSA in children, and what are appropriate treatment steps. 

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Implant Surgery for OSA

Posted by Darian Dozier on Jul 25, 2022 6:26:00 PM

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)  is a sleep disorder in which breathing frequently stops while sleeping. It happens because your upper airway muscles relax and cause a blockage in the back of your throat.  This makes it very difficult for air to pass through, and leads to breathing cessation. Then, you wake up to start breathing again, interrupting your sleep. However, you are unaware that you continue waking up throughout the night to begin breathing again, and are just tired but unsure why.

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How to Know if Your Child Has Sleep Apnea

Posted by Darian Dozier on Feb 5, 2022 2:08:00 PM

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that impacts your ability to breathe during the night. Although discussed as a part of adult health, children could also be at risk for sleep apnea. It's important that you recognize if your child has sleep apnea and get them the proper help as proper oxygenation and quality sleep is important for their growth and development. 

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Sleep Disorders Related to Severe COVID-19 Outcomes

Posted by Darian Dozier on Jan 28, 2022 11:37:00 AM

COVID-19 can present with varying levels of severity for anyone who contracts the virus. It is a respiratory virus that affects the lungs' ability to properly oxygenate the body. Some patients have no to mild symptoms while others have very severe symptoms that require respiratory assistance. Certain sleep disorders may be related to severe COVID-19, so it's important to know what these diseases are and how they can affect your prognosis. 

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Topics: Sleep Apnea, COVID19

Asthma and COPD at Night

Posted by Darian Dozier on Jan 12, 2022 9:40:00 AM

Asthma and COPD are both obstructive diseases that make it difficult for lungs to completely get rid of all the air in them. Asthma is more common in younger patients and is reversible through treatment with drugs like albuterol and terbutaline. COPD is not reversible and is more evident in older patients, especially those with a history of smoking. It's important to know the difference between these two diseases, as well as the impact they can have on your sleep. Continue reading to find out more about sleep problems in these individuals. 

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