Hi, From last 3-4 years I face this issue once or twice a month wherein I wake up in the middle of night and am gasping for breath. My wind pipe gets completely choked by flem and I have to completely open my mouth and take big breaths to get back to normal
Sometimes this condition lasts for 20-30 seconds and sometimes goes up to a minute and during this minute it seems I will die of not being able to inhale. Usually I get a lot of berps during this time and its only after berps that the passage open a little and breathing becomes normal. After this gradually the flem starts to come out and its only after clearing my chest of this flem that I can get back to sleep again. This has never happened twice in the same night though
Additional background: I have allergic rhinitis from last 15 years and have cold like symptoms throughout the year. Usually when I get near dust I start sneezing a lot. However this sympton of breathing stopping has only started happening from last 3-4 years
Your symptoms could be due to Asthma. This can be detected by spirometry. It could also be due to Obstructive Sleep Apnea. When a person sleeps the airways are usually patent allowing normal passage for air entry. The upper airway that is at the region of the tongue and the soft palate is the most compliant (soft) part. So, this is liable to collapse and cause airway obstruction. I would advise you to consult a sleep specialist who would assess with first a sleep questionnaire, and then he may ask for a polysomnogram, which is an overnight sleep study as this helps to detect the apneas.
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