OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
WHAT IS OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA (OSA)?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a sleep breathing disorder in which a person stops breathing while they sleep. The tissues in the throat collapse, cutting off the airway despite efforts to breathe. Apnea is defined as “a cessation of airflow for 10 seconds or more.” This can occur dozens and sometimes even hundreds of times an hour.
Typically, someone with sleep apnea snores heavily, and then stops breathing while still sleeping. A sleeping partner would observe that the person is struggling to breathe but there is no snoring sound. These periods of stopped breathing are followed by a gasping or choking sound. The person with sleep apnea will partially awaken in order to breathe, leading to fragmented, non-refreshing sleep which can be the cause of excessive daytime sleepiness.
The even greater concern is that when the airway collapses and oxygen is cut off, the body goes into a fight-or-flight response, putting a strain on the heart and increasing blood pressure. Over time, this can wear out the heart and lead to heart disease or a stroke.
Attached to this letter is the STOP BANG questionnaire that is used to evaluate a patient’s risk for OSA.
Please fill it out and then call us today to set up a time to discuss if you are a candidate for a comfortable & non-invasive treatment option, Oral Appliance Therapy.
STOP BANG Questionnaire (click here for PDF version)
Please answer yes or no to the following questions. This is a screening tool to assess the risk potential for sleep apnea.
S – Snoring – have you been told that you snore? Y / N
T – Tired – Do you often feel tired, fatigued, or sleepy during daytime? Y / N
O – Observed – Do you know if you stop breathing or has anyone witnessed you stop breathing while you are asleep? Y / N
P – Pressure – Do you have high blood pressure or are you on medication to control high blood pressure? Y / N
B – BMI – Is your body mass index greater than 28? Y / N
A – Age – Are you over 50 years old? Y / N
N – Neck Circumference – Are you a male with a neck circumference greater than 17 inches? Or a female with a neck circumference greater 16 inches? Y / N
G – Gender – Are you a male? Y / N
If you answer yes to 3 or more of these questions you are at a high risk for sleep apnea. Please call our office and we can schedule a no risk consultation today!
DOES IT ONLY HAPPEN IN ADULTS?
No, it can occur in children as well. Does your child snore? Grind at night? Diagnosed with ADHD or ADD? Is a bedwetter? Has dark circles? Is sleepy all the time? Was a fussy eater or couldn’t be breast fed?
Bring your child in for an assessment of the airway, tonsil evaluation, crowding issues or tongue ties.