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Improve Your Sleep Habits

Are you having difficulty getting to sleep at night?  Do you fall asleep easily, only to wake several times through the night unable to get back to sleep? These difficulties can make the night-time seem long.  Your problems feel greater and can influence how you approach the following day. Well, you are not alone.

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Obstructive Sleep Apnea

What is it?

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a condition that occurs only during sleep. OSA sufferers experience repeated complete or partial closure of their throat (pharynx or airway) while they sleep. This airway closure leads to reduced depth of breathing and periods of breathing cessation. These episodes can last between 10 seconds to over a minute, causing a fall in the oxygen levels in the blood as a result. These disturbances to breathing lead to interruptions in sleep called an arousals. Arousals can be as quick as 3 seconds in duration but they disrupt the sleep cycle. You may not be aware of these as they may not wake you fully out of your sleep. These periods of obstruction are called events and can happen many times (sometimes hundreds) throughout the night. The disruption to the normal sleeping cycle can cause fatigue, headaches, difficulty focusing on daily tasks, irritation and may also be linked with medical conditions such as high blood pressure, irregular heart rhythms and diabetes.

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Dysfunctional Breathing Patterns

“Just Breathe” is a common saying, implying its an easy thing to do.

But sometimes “just breathing “ is not always that.

It can be fast, it can be hard work, it can stop you from doing what you want to do. It can stop you from starting what you want to do. You may get concerned and anxious about how you are going to manage. Your breathing does not always follow what you brain is telling it to do.

Your breathing is the foundation of all that you do. Your life, your function, your exercise, your enjoyment. To breathe well is to live well. But often, we do not breathe in a way that is best or most optimal for us. Over-breathing can lead to symptoms of dizziness, anxiety and shortness of breath.

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