(HealthDay News) -- Sleep apnea occurs when sleep is interrupted, though not always enough to wake the person. Often, it is caused by the temporary obstruction of the upper airway.
Sleep apnea is associated with loss of sleep, and more serious conditions such as high blood pressure and heart disease, the American Lung Association (ALA) says.
Among children, sleep apnea often is caused by inflamed tonsils or adenoids, which should be evaluated by a pediatrician.
While the best course of treatment should be recommended by your doctor, the ALA offers this list of possible ways to control sleep apnea:
- Maintain a healthy body weight with exercise and a healthy diet.
- Attend a sleep lab, where sleep apnea can be analyzed and specific treatments recommended.
- A technique called a nasal CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), which delivers air through a mask.
- Special dental appliances.