Sleep Disorders

Snoring is caused by the vibrating movement of the uvula and the soft palate that is located in the roof of the mouth.  The uvula is the small mass of tissue that hangs down from the middle of the soft palate.  When a person sleeps, the uvula and the soft palate relax and vibrating movements occur, causing the snoring sound. Sleep Apnea is a serious sleep disorder that occurs when a persons breathing is interrupted during sleep. People with untreated sleep apnea stop breathing repeatedly during their sleep, sometimes hundreds of times.  This means the brain may not be getting enough oxygen.  There are two types of sleep apnea; Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Central Sleep Apnea.  Obstructive Sleep Apneais the more common of the two and is caused by a blockage of the airway, usually when the soft tissue in the back of the throat collapses during sleep.  With Central Sleep Apnea,  the airway is not blocked, but the brain fails to signal the muscles to breath due to instability in the respiratory control center.