Sleep is vitally important to good health. Having too much or too little sleep can shorten life expectancy. Since most of us cannot afford to have too much sleep, these articles will mostly be about too little sleep.
- Lack of Sleep is detrimental to health. Less than six hours per night can significantly shorten your life expectancy. However, more than 8 hours of sleep on a regular basis can leave you lethargic and perhaps shorten your life also.
- Sleep Apnea is also a major concern of many people, especially as people grow older. There are two types of Apnea, obstructive and central.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the most common and often involves problems with a person being overweight. There are systems that will help open the throat to allow better airflow.
Central Sleep Apnea can be of more concern. My understanding is that this is caused by the brain forgetting to send the signal to breath. Again, positive pressure can lesson the episodes experienced. I have been told that the best way to combat central apnea is to live at a lower elevation. Why is it that there are always some reasons that the place one lives has some aspects that may not be the healthiest for that person.
Most sleep apneas are treated with machines connected to a facial or nose mask. It is interesting that the two type masks work differently on various people. It is best to test them out and see which one works best for you. There are three basic settings that are used on most systems:
- CPAP – Continuous pressure to prevent blockages and remind the brain to breath.
- Bi-pressure – a stronger pressure on the inhales and a lesser pressure on exhales
- ASV -Automatic Sensing ? – The machine must be sensitive and will vary the pressure (within prescribed ranges) for inhales and exhales. This is the most complex system but also the one that can sometimes make the most dramatic improvements in sleep.
There are also other methods on the market to treat sleep apnea. But I am not familiar with them so I will not be commenting on them in this article. If someone has some information, please add a comment.