OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA (OSA) – Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common form of sleep apnea that affects adults and children worldwide. When an individual goes to sleep, their upper airway muscles relax, allowing the palate and the tongue to fall down and block the airway. In most individuals, this tissue only falls a little and is a normal process without serious consequences. However, the air passage may often completely block, particularly in those with loud snoring, daytime sleepiness, or irregular breathing at night.

When the brain detects the blocked airway, it wakes you up. After a few seconds, the rate, blood pressure, and oxygen levels have often normalized, allowing one to fall back to sleep. This can occur many hundreds of times during the night causing sleep to become very fragmented and the cardiovascular system to become stressed. Snoring is a warning sign of sleep apnea. Often there will be snoring followed by a period of silence, and then a loud snort or gasp and a body position change as breathing restarts.

Insomnia Difficulty falling or staying asleep can be caused by various underlying medical issues.  According to the National Sleep Foundation, people with insomnia can feel dissatisfied with their sleep and usually experience one or more of the following symptoms: fatigue, low energy, difficulty concentrating, mood disturbances, and decreased performance in work or at school.

Narcolepsy A sleep disorder that typically begins in teenagers, characterized by daytime sleepiness and uncontrollable urges to sleep. It may include sudden muscle weakness at times of strong emotions.

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) – Uncomfortable and sometimes painful involuntary movement of the legs during sleep or rest. The discomfort improves temporarily with movement and can prevent a person from getting restful sleep.

Periodic Limb Movement Disorder (PLMD) – Involuntary, repetitive movements of legs or arms during sleep, causing broken sleep.

Parasomnias  A very broad category of conditions that include sleepwalking, sleep talking, and night terrors. Some of these disorders are outgrown, but some reflect other underlying sleep problems or may last into adulthood.

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder characterized by repeated interruptions in breathing throughout the sleep cycle.

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