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What is Upper Airway Resistance?

Sleep-disordered breathing is the problem, and there are multiple causes, sometimes more than one in a person.  Here are a couple of the problems:
Sleep Apnea
Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome (UARS)

Sleep apnea is when a person stops breathing during sleep.  (If someone has told you that you stop breathing, come see us ASAP!)

Snoring is...annoying at least for anyone that shares living space with you!  (We can help you with this, and your loved ones will appreciate it!)

Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome (UARS) is when something in your airway is not allowing enough air to reach your lungs.

Breathing is one of only a couple of top priorities for your body.  If you aren't breathing, your body is willing to sacrifice most things to take another breath.  Unfortunately, UARS is not usually detected by a person, because they've grown up with it.  They have not experienced life without it, therefore, they don't recognize that there is a problem.  Without intervention, UARS can develop into sleep apnea.


There is a volume of air that must reach your lungs for two reasons:  to keep in balance with your body's oxygen requirements and to manage the pH of your body through storing or releasing carbon dioxide.  If there is not enough volume by even a small amount, you must take an extra breath to catch up.


During the day, that solution is simple:  yawn, sigh, breathe deeply.  During sleep, the answer is much less simple.  The muscles to breathe and to run the heart and other systems are all active during sleep, however, the skeletal muscles like of the face and throat, head, neck, shoulders, etc. are all turned off during the deepest stages of sleep.  How, then, to take that much needed extra breath?  Well, those muscles need to get awakened, and your body does that by jump starting the system with adrenalin.  In a sleep test, this is known as a respiratory disturbance, and the term is also respiratory effort related arousal, or RERA.  Not only does a RERA remove the restorative properties of proper sleep cycles, it is hard on your body to go through this event multiple times per night, sometimes multiple times per hour!


What bad things happen when someone has many RERAs?  Anxiety and depression, high blood pressure, heart palpitations, night terrors, and many other illnesses tied both to not getting enough quality sleep, and from having many "panic" events where the body struggles to breathe.

Father and Daughter

Let us help you see if you suffer from these sleep disturbances. 

Call us or email us today to find out how you can improve your breathing while sleeping!
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