Healthy Living

Dead Air: The Perils of Sleep Apnea

Contributing Factors

A person’s weight is often directly linked to having obstructive sleep apnea. This is because overweight people tend to have excess fatty tissues in the neck and throat causing the upper respiratory system pathway to be restricted during sleep. Aging may also come into play with obstructive sleep apnea as muscles lose its structural definition with age. With the throat muscles beginning to lose its integrity, they are more likely to collapse onto the airway during sleep. There are other risk factors that can contribute to developing obstructive sleep apnea like enlarged tonsils, genetic predisposition to the disease, and lifestyle choices such as frequent alcohol consumption and smoking.