Posts for tag: Sleep Apnea
Let our ear, nose and throat specialists tackle your chronic conditions.
Have you just recently been diagnosed with sleep apnea and feeling confused about how to best manage your new condition? Does the change in weather suddenly have you sneezing, coughing and feeling like you can’t win the battle against your allergies? Luckily, if you are dealing with these problems our Hagerstown and Frederick, MD, otolaryngologist, Dr. Kirby Scott, is here to help.
In many cases, sleep apnea and loud snoring go hand in hand. Since untreated sleep apnea can lead to some pretty serious health complications it’s important that you seek the care of an ENT doctor as soon as possible. We can work with you and your sleep specialists to create a treatment plan that will get you sleeping better sooner. While CPAP tends to be the standard when it comes to keeping airways open while you sleep, there are also other options that may be able to handle more serious forms of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
One surgical procedure known as uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) is a great treatment for both those suffering from loud snoring and OSA. By removing excessive tissue in the throat we can help ensure that airways stay open while you are asleep.
There are many different kinds of allergies that one can suffer from including foods, medications, insect bites or stings, as well as seasonal allergies (e.g. pollen; mold). If you have seasonal allergies and over-the-counter allergy medications aren’t doing the trick then it’s time to talk to our Hagerstown and Frederick ENT doctor about prescription antihistamines and other medications that can help get your symptoms under control.
Of course, there are certain lifestyle changes that can also improve your allergy symptoms. This includes using a HEPA-filter air purifier that will trap spores, dusting and vacuuming all furniture and surfaces at least once a week, wearing a protective mask when out in the garden, bathing pets regularly and avoiding cigarette smoke.
Central ENT Consultants in Hagerstown and Frederick, MD, provides comprehensive ear, nose, and throat care so that regardless of whether you need to manage your allergy symptoms better or you are dealing with hearing loss our team is here to help.
How your ENT specialists in Hagerstown and Frederick can help
Loud snoring can be more than just annoying; it can be a sign of a serious sleep condition known as sleep apnea. If you do have sleep apnea, the condition can shorten your life, which is why it’s so important to visit your ear, nose and throat specialists if you have loud, chronic snoring. Your ENT specialists at Central ENT Consultants want to help. They have offices in Hagerstown and Frederick, MD, to serve your needs.
If you snore, you’re not alone. In fact, 37 million Americans snore on a regular basis, according to the National Sleep Foundation. Estimates from the foundation state that about 50% of people who snore loudly actually have sleep apnea.
In addition to loud snoring, you may notice additional signs of symptoms of sleep apnea which include:
- Headaches in the morning
- Sleepiness and fatigue during the day
- Waking up suddenly with a choking, gasping feeling
- Waking up with a sore throat
What happens when you have sleep apnea is that the soft tissue at the back of your throat relaxes, blocking your airway. When your airway is blocked, oxygen to your brain and vital organs is diminished or cut off completely. Your brain and organs don’t function at full capacity, leading to the possibility of:
- Heart failure
- Memory problems
- Impaired physical and mental function
There are some home remedies to lessen sleep apnea. You can try to:
- Avoid taking sedatives before bed
- Avoid drinking alcohol before bed
- Take a nasal decongestant
- Try sleeping on your side
- Give up smoking
When you visit your ENT specialists at Central ENT Consultants, they may fit you with a Continuous Positive Air Pressure machine, also called a CPAP. The machine contains a nosepiece which fits comfortably over your mouth and nose, providing a continuous flow of oxygen while you sleep.
You don’t have to let loud snoring or sleep apnea control your life. Take control of your sleep and call your ENT specialists at Central ENT Consultants in Hagerstown and Frederick, MD. Call today and sleep well!
Consistently getting a good night’s rest is crucial to both your physical and mental health. About 18 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea. This potentially life-threatening condition, which affects your breathing during sleep, is a serious cause for concern and can affect your life greatly. Learn more about sleep apnea with your doctors at Central ENT Consultants in Hagerstown and Frederick, MD.
What is sleep apnea?
An apnea is defined as a pause in breathing during sleep. These apneas can occur for one of two reasons: a malfunction of the body’s breathing system (central sleep apnea, CSA) or an obstruction in the airflow while breathing (obstructive sleep apnea, OSA). However, OSA is the most common form of sleep apnea.
How do I know if I have sleep apnea?
Often, the bed partners of sleep apnea patients notice the symptoms of this condition before the actual sufferer. The symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- loud, excessive snoring
- waking up gasping or choking
- daytime sleepiness
- morning headaches
- mood swings
- sore or dry throat upon waking
If your snoring is loud enough to wake you up or disturb your bed partner, you regularly wake up gasping for breath, or you notice your daily life being affected by your lack of a good night’s rest, it may be time to see your doctor. Those with excess weight, a family history of sleep apnea, a narrow airway, and who use alcohol, tobacco, or sedatives are more at risk for sleep apnea. Additionally, men are more likely to develop sleep apnea than women, as are those who are of advanced age.
How is sleep apnea treated?
There is no single test to diagnose sleep apnea. A sleep study allows your doctor to determine if you are suffering from this condition. Additionally, family and medical history aid in a proper diagnosis. In mild cases of sleep apnea, simple lifestyle changes such as losing weight or sleeping in different positions helps ease the symptoms of sleep apnea. However, the most effective and common treatment for this condition is wearing a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine at night to regulate the flow of the air into the lungs. Some severe cases of sleep apnea require surgical intervention. Your doctor can help you determine which is the best way to treat your sleep apnea.
For more information on sleep apnea, please contact an ENT specialist at Central ENT Consultants with offices in Hagerstown and Frederick, MD. Call (301) 739-0400 to speak with an associate about scheduling your appointment today!
Maybe it's the subject of a long-running joke among family and friends. Your partner's snoring is so loud and dramatic, it can probably be heard in another zip code. No amount of nose pinching and rolling them onto their side while they sleep seems to help. And while the occasional bout of snoring can make for a funny story (unless you're the person being kept awake), chronic snoring can sometimes be a sign of a potentially serious sleep disorder known as sleep apnea.
What is Sleep Apnea?
When the muscles at the back of the throat become relaxed during sleep, it can obstruct the airway, which results in the nasal night symphony known as snoring (the actual sound comes from vibrations of the soft palate). Normal bouts of snoring can result from several factors, including:
- Tonsil infection/swelling
- Deviated septum/blocked nasal passage
- Alcohol consumption
With sleep apnea, the person actually stops breathing for seconds or even minutes at a time throughout the night. Often, the condition is caught when a partner observes the snorer's pattern of snoring and pauses in breathing while they sleep. Because it disrupts the sleep cycle, people often feel exhausted, groggy, and irritable throughout the day, in spite of getting a full night's sleep.
The otolaryngologists at Hagerstown and Frederick based Central ENT Consultants, P.C. diagnose patients by performing a physical exam, and a sleep test to monitor vital functions during a sleep cycle in some cases. The condition can range from mild to severe, and in more severe cases lead to other health risks such as:
- High blood pressure
- Heart attack
Sleep Apnea Treatment in Hagerstown and Frederickâ€‹
In addition to uncomfortable everyday side effects like headaches, exhaustion, and mood swings, sleep apnea can pose a serious health risk for some patients. If you or a loved one are suffering from excessive snoring or symptoms of sleep apnea, contact an ear, nose, and throat specialist at Central ENT Consultants, P.C. in Hagerstown and Frederick by calling (301) 739-0400 to schedule an appointment today.
How Can I Find Out if I Have Sleep Apnea? Common symptoms of sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is a condition in which the tissue at the back of your throat relaxes and blocks your airway while you sleep. Your breathing might stop and start again several times per night. Instead of getting a nice restful sleep, you wake up just as tired as when you went to bed. The condition can be very serious because your brain and organs aren’t getting the oxygen they need. This can lead to very serious problems including heart failure, stroke and memory difficulties.
Common symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Sleepiness during the day
- Waking with a choking or gasping feeling
- Waking with a sore throat
- Having a headache in the morning
- Snoring loudly
Sleep apnea can lead to potentially life-threatening problems later on, so it’s vital you seek help. The specialists at Central ENT Consultants in Hagerstown and Frederick, Maryland are the go-to experts in sleep apnea. They will evaluate your risk factors and symptoms, and may recommend an evaluation at a sleep laboratory.
You may be fitted with a CPAP (Continuous Positive Air Pressure) machine, which fits over your mouth and nose. It provides a continuous flow of air through your nose.
There are some things you can try at home. You should try to avoid sedatives or alcohol before sleep and you can also try sleeping on your side. Sometimes taking a nasal decongestant may help. You should also try to address some of the risk factors for sleep apnea. According to the Mayo Clinic, major risk factors such as:
- Being overweight- makes you four times more likely to have sleep apnea
- Smoking- makes you three times more likely to have sleep apnea
- Family history- makes it more likely you will have sleep apnea
Remember that sleep apnea has the potential to shorten your life, so don’t wait! Come in and visit the experts at Central ENT Consultants in Hagerstown and Frederick, Maryland. You owe it to yourself to live a long and healthy life. Call today!