What causes OSA?
During sleep, muscles relax, including those that control the tongue and throat. The soft tissue (or flesh) at the back of your throat can sag, narrowing the airway. Incoming air then makes the tissue at the rear roof of the mouth (the soft palate), the flap of skin hanging from the palate (uvula) and the throat vibrate – a sound we know as snoring.
Loud snoring may be a sign of a more serious problem – OSA.This is where the airway becomes completely blocked and breathing stops. The brain then detects the lack of oxygen and prompts a momentary arousal to draw breath.
Although OSA sufferers may experience hundreds of apneas episodes per night, they are unlikely to remember any of them. In fact, if sufferers live alone or sleep separately, they may not be aware of their condition, even after many years.
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