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What is Sleep Apnoea?

Sleep apnoea (also known as sleep apnea or obstructive sleep apnoea) is a condition which affects your airways while you sleep, leading to trouble breathing. It occurs when the walls of the throat relax and block off your upper airway.

Sleep apnoea can be classified into two types:

  • Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) – This occurs when the upper airway repeatedly narrows or collapses, blocking the flow of air and causing breathing issues during sleep.
  • Central Sleep Apnoea (CSA) – This occurs when the brain doesn’t signal the breathing muscles properly, resulting in disrupted breathing despite a clear airway.

If your airways close enough to impact oxygen levels or your breathing pauses for more than 10 seconds, it is classified as apnoea.

As a guide, the severity of your sleep apnea is determined by how many times your breathing is disrupted per hour while sleeping. This can be discovered through a sleep study.