What Causes Sleep Apnea and What the Risk Factors

What Causes Sleep Apnea and What the Risk Factors
SleepDisorderCure.net - Knowing what causes sleep apnea is very important because this sleeping problem can actually affect your health greatly. Sleep apnea, which is mainly hinted with loud snoring every single night, might seem like a joke or simply an annoyance for your sleeping partner. But the truth is, this disorder can poses great risk for your well-being and it can even cause serious complication. If your sleeping partner complains that you often snore and gasp for breath during sleep, it is an indication that you might have this disorder. Here are some information about sleeping apnea so you can treat it accordingly.

Causes of Sleep Apnea
Throat muscles are important in keeping your airway open so you can breathe properly. When you are awake, your airway becomes stiff which allow you to breathe thanks to those muscles. However, when you are asleep, those muscles relax and your airway becomes narrower than when you are awake.

In normal condition, the narrowing airway will not cause any problem. But when you have sleep apnea, it will cause breathing and sleeping problem. The most obvious symptom is definitely snoring, and while you are not aware of this, your sleeping partner will. The airway blockage also will stop oxygen from going to your body which can obstruct your sleeping pattern.

Risk Factors 
After learning what causes sleep apnea, now let’s find out why some people have it while other people don’t. Here are some risk factors that can lead to breathing problem when the airway is narrowing.

1. Overweight and Obesity
Overweight people with BMI above 25 are in high risk of developing sleep apnea. And in obese people with BMI above 40 the risk is multiplying by seven times. Overweight can cause the risk of this disorder because the amount of fat on the airway can lead to breathing problem.

2. Enlarged Tonsils
Overweight people have the highest risk of developing sleeping apnea in some point of their life. However, people without weight problem can also suffer from this disorder and one of the risk factor is enlarged tonsil, which is commonly happen in children.

3. Tumors
Basically, anything that blocks your airway can cause sleep apnea. Sometimes it is because you are born with narrow airways, in other cases it is because you have thick neck circumference. In several rare cases, sleep apnea can even be caused tumor that grows in the airways. It is hard to tell whether the disorder is caused by tumor or something else, so it is best to check the condition right away.

4. Older People
The risk of sleep apnea will grow as you grow older. This mainly happens when the brain function is reduced and your brain fails to wake you up to help stiffen your muscle throats.

5. Smoking
Smoking is what causes sleep apnea in people who are not overweight, don’t have tumors and have normal neck size. Smoking will cause inflammation in the airway which also will cause fluid buildup in that area. If smoking is the cause of your sleep apnea, the symptom can be reduced if you quit smoking.

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