Sunday, October 28, 2012

Elbowing and sleep apnea

If you are a peaceful sleeper that doesn’t snore than you probably don’t have many experiences being elbowed at night by your partner. But if you do have a sleep disorder that is disruptive like snoring or restless leg syndrome than you probably have tested your partner’s patience at night. This can be especially true if you have the sleep disorder known as sleep apnea.  In fact it might be a good thing that someone is elbowing you at night.

The University of Saskatchewan asked 124 patients who were about to have a sleep  study if their sleeping partner ever elbowed or poked them to stop snoring or to wake them up because they had stopped breathing.  It is not surprising that asking these types of questions can help predict whether someone is suffering from sleep apnea.

This isn’t particularly shocking because most of us who have sleep apnea have not only been elbowed or punched at night but usually told the next morning that our snoring or grunting or gasping for air is very annoying and is not conductive to a relaxing sleeping environment.

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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Sleep apnea and slurred speech

After a night of unsatisfying rest due to sleep apnea you will most likely find yourself more than a little groggy.  No matter how much coffee you guzzle the daily effects of sleep apnea will be with you most of the day if not all of the day.  Memory loss and being slightly disoriented are 2 symptoms that will make the day less than productive. Something else that might be a problem is slurred speech.

According to the National library of Medicine slurred speech or Dysarthria is found in people that have “a nerve, brain, or muscle disorder makes it difficult to use or control the muscles of the mouth, tongue, larynx, or vocal cords, which make speech. The muscles may be weak or completely paralyzed, or it may be difficult for the muscles to work together.”

Slurred speech is often found in people who have had strokes, face or brain trauma or even dementia. Cerebral palsy and MS patients often have this disorder as well.

Is there a connection between sleep apnea and slurred speech?

This seems to make sense because sleep apnea patients usually have loose tissue in the back of the throat which in turn causes breathing to stop. has listed sleep apnea as something that could cause slurred speech also.

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