The Greek hero of the Trojan war, Achilles, had only one vulnerable area on his body, his heel. Similarly, modern humans also have a vulnerable part of the our anatomy, the upper airway, which simultaneously accommodates for breathing, swallowing, and speaking. The ability to talk, however, came at a price. Evolutionary biologists have stated that speech and language development was detrimental to our health. Overdevelopment of our speech structures compromised our ...

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Studies in the past have shown that when someone complains about not being able to sleep to a doctor, more often than not, a sleeping pill is prescribed. The reason is that young doctors are taught in training that pharmaceuticals like Zolpidem (Ambien) stimulates GABA receptors in the brain, promoting sleep. There’s essentially no mention that cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia works just as well for insomnia in the short ...

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As the new school year begins, it’s only natural that there’s more awareness about learning and behavior issues. One of the most controversial topics that came up frequently is ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. It’s thought that 2-4% of children have this condition, and a shocking 50% of children with this condition are on some form of prescription medication. Not only is it seen in children, but adults ...

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In sleep disorders, obstructive sleep apnea is the most common condition that’s seen, but a significant number of people with obstructive sleep apnea will also have central sleep apnea. Central sleep apnea is thought to be a condition that’s associated with a number of different neurologic problems, as well as heart or kidney failure. During the night, people with central sleep apnea stop breathing when signals in the brain that ...

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Millions of surgical operations are performed every year to improve your health, beauty, and even your smile, but there’s a hidden danger in some of the most common procedures that can aggravate if not actually cause obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea happens when your jaws are too narrow, which constricts the internal soft tissue layer that lines your upper breathing passageways, from ...

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Chronic cough is a common condition that's seen by many doctors, and in most cases, after a thorough history and exam, an answer can usually be found. However, just because a physician followed all the accepted guidelines and evidence based medicine principles to successfully address and treat a condition, it doesn't mean that it was the right thing to do. Let me explain. A 49 year old healthy woman presented to ...

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Have you ever wondered by some people never get colds? Why do other people get colds at the drop of a sneeze? An opinion piece recently published in the New York Times explains away a common myth—that you have to strengthen your immune system to fight a cold. His argument is that your symptoms of a cold are actually your immune system over-reacting to harmless viruses. This is similar ...

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If you wake up every morning needing to hack up lots of thick mucous, or have throat pain, hoarseness, or a chronic cough, you’re not alone. You may think it’s the beginning of a cold, but a cold doesn’t continue for weeks to months without progressing into the full-blown viral symptoms. Instead, these symptoms are the beginnings of the most common throat problem sleep apnea sufferers face. And as I explain ...

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One of the most common excuses for not wanting to use CPAP is that "I travel a lot." Even after I explain that many people travel just fine with their CPAP machines, some people are stll reluctant. With advances in technology and increased awareness by the lay public, government officials and medical professionals about the importance of using CPAP for obstructive sleep apnea, traveling with CPAP, although initially a challenge, can be ...

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Every time you see a depiction of someone sleeping on TV or in the movies, you'll see the person sleeping on his or her back, and oftentimes, snoring. The lay public, doctors, and even alternative and complementary practitioners naturally assume that you're able to breathe properly at night. This couldn't be further from the truth. Evolutionary biologists and comparative anatomists have stated that speech and language development was ultimately detrimental to humans. ...

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