President Joe Biden has begun to use a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to treat sleep apnea, the White House confirms.
"He used a CPAP machine last night, which is common for people with that history," said White House spokesman Andrew Bates addressing the questions about marks on the side of Biden's face.
At the age of 80, Biden is the oldest president in the United States (US) history. Both voters and opponents have focused on the president's age and health as Biden seeks reelection in 2024. According to a recent poll, 68% of voters are concerned that he lacks the mental and physical health to lead the country.
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by periodic gasping or "snorting" noises, during which sleep is momentarily interrupted. People with the condition may experience excessive daytime sleepiness because their sleep may not feel restorative due to interruptions. The conditions that narrow the airway, such as obesity, larger tonsils, or changes in hormone levels, can increase the risk for sleep apnea.
As people with sleep apnea suffer from insufficient sleep, they are at increased risk of developing several chronic conditions, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression.
A CPAP machine is the most common treatment for sleep apnea that provides constant air pressure in the throat to keep the airway open when a person breathes in.
The treatment for sleep apnea can also include healthy lifestyle changes, such as regular physical activity, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting alcohol.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Key Sleep Disorders.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sleep and Chronic Disease.
- National Hurt, Lung, and Blood Institute. Treatment.
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