Sleep Apnea Is More Dangerous Than You Might Think
In Blog |
by Galleria of Smiles
Sleep apnea is a disorder characterized by obnoxiously loud snoring. And while the disorder certainly affects your sleep, it can potentially have a very serious effect on your overall health.
If you have sleep apnea, you will repeatedly stop breathing while you sleep. The lack of oxygen means your brain, as well as the rest of your body, might not get the oxygen it needs.
There are two types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and central sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is caused by a blockage of the airway, while central sleep apnea happens when your brain doesn’t send a signal to your muscles to breathe.
At Galleria of Smiles, Dr. M. Emami and Dr. Justin Emami regularly see patients with sleep apnea and help them find relief from their symptoms. In fact, we will work hard to make sure you find a solution that works for you.
But why is it so important to treat your sleep apnea? Learn more about the potential health problems it can cause.
Health Problems Related To Sleep Apnea
High Blood Pressure
For patients who already have high blood pressure, sleep apnea can make it even worse. Constantly waking up during the night puts stress on your body, causing your blood pressure levels to spike. A lack of oxygen in your blood from not breathing can also affect your blood pressure.
Many patients with high blood pressure and sleep apnea will see an improvement in their blood pressure once their sleep apnea is treated. However, don’t stop taking your medication or change the dosage without first talking to your doctor.
There are quite a few contributing factors for heart disease and sleep apnea is one of them. People with obstructive sleep apnea are at a higher risk for heart attacks than those without OSA. Strokes and atrial fibrillation are also associated with sleep apnea.
When your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can affect how well your brain controls blood flow throughout your body.
Type 2 Diabetes
At least 80% or more of people with type 2 diabetes have sleep apnea. Obesity is one of the main contributing factors of sleep apnea and also puts a person at higher risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
Not getting enough sleep makes it harder for your body to use insulin properly, potentially leading to diabetes.
Additional issues you may experience as a result of sleep apnea include:
- Mood swings
- Chronic fatigue and daytime sleepiness
- Worsening ADHD
Sleep Apnea Treatment
It’s important to seek treatment for sleep apnea as soon as you suspect there may be a problem. Getting treated for sleep apnea is about a lot more than just improving your quality of sleep.
You may be surprised to find out that your sleep apnea can be treated at a dentist office. At Galleria of Smiles, we have successfully treated many patients with sleep apnea. You might be the next one!
When you come to our office for a consultation, we will go over your symptoms and take a look at your mouth to get a proper diagnosis. In some cases, we refer our patients to undergo a sleep study, but usually we can get to the root of the problem right here in our office.
If you are suffering from OSA, you may find relief in a mouthguard. These special mouthguards are worn while you sleep and position your jaw in a way that keeps your airway open without causing you discomfort. Most patients would prefer the mouthguard over a CPAP machine if they had the option. We can custom-make a mouthguard so so you and your partner can rest easy.