There are many things we take for granted. One such issue we tend to think would happen normally for every individual is breathing. However, nothing could be further from the truth. The Australian Health Survey, in 2011-2012, conducted a survey which indicated that 6.3 million Australians suffered from respiratory problems.
Here are a few things you should know about respiratory problems, particularly regarding sleep apnea.
1. Habits To Avoid
Health professions have warned about dangers of smoking. Smoking affects almost every part of your body and it’s considered a major cause of respiratory diseases, for it retains fluids in your throat and airway. Not forgetting that smoking also narrows nasal passages, further contributing to the negative impact.
Alcohol is one other thing you should avoid when you have breathing issues, because it decreases muscle tone at the back of your throat, thus interfering with airflow.
You should also avoid eating unhealthy foods that can cause you to become overweight.
Sleeping pills also cause increased throat muscle relaxation, narrowing the upper airway. An anaesthetic drug during surgery poses the same danger.
2. Normal Breathing Or Snoring
Air is supposed to pass through the nose via a flexible structure in the back of the throat (the soft palate), when normal breathing is taking place. The airway is held open by muscles when you’re awake. Once you fall asleep, these muscles are relaxed, but the airway normally stays open.
Snoring takes place when breathing is obstructed during sleep. In some cases, snoring can be harmless; but in other cases, it can be a sign of serious medical conditions. This occurs when excessive fat deposits, the uvula and a long soft palate contribute to airway narrowing. Muscles can also relax enough to cause narrowing of the airway, thus obstructing air flow. When air pushes through these obstructions, the soft palate vibrates causing the sound.
3. Major Risks Brought About By Respiratory Issues
When you’re not breathing your blood pressure goes up. Moreover, oxygen levels in your body fall and excite receptors that alert your brain. Through the nervous system, your brain sends signals in response to this, essentially triggering your blood vessels to increase the flow of oxygen in your heart and brain.
The effects of such respiratory issues experienced at night tend to carry on even during the day, when you’re awake. Multiple biological mechanisms that persist during the day are triggered by low oxygen level during the night.
It’s also believed that if you have a sleep-related disorder, you’re likely to suffer from a cardiovascular disease. The cardiovascular diseases include stroke, coronary artery disease and atrial fibrillation. Hypertension is also a common problem. With sleep apnoea, you either are at risk of suffering a heart condition or you previously had a cardiovascular disease.
Considering such serious diseases that may arise simply due to respiratory problems, it’s certainly wise to seek treatment as early as possible. Fortunately, there exist specialized medical facilities capable of dealing with just this problem. You would also benefit from diverse treatment options, suited to your particular case.