Understanding Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a serious sleep disorder that interferes with your body’s ability to breathe during the night. This occurs when the soft tissue of your palate relaxes in the back of your throat, effectively blocking the flow of oxygen. While sleep apnea can lead to serious health complications, the disorder often goes undiagnosed as symptoms occur when you’re asleep.
There are two types of sleep apnea, though OSA is much more common. Your body will briefly wake in the middle of the night to try to resume normal airflow, with the interruptions often being forgotten due to you being half asleep. As a result, your body is unable to receive the rest it needs to feel energized the next day.
Fortunately, at Summit Dental Care, our doctors can help treat your sleep apnea and help you get the rest you deserve. Learn more about our treatment options and how our office can relieve you of your symptoms.
Sleep Apnea Symptoms
It can be difficult to determine if you may be suffering from some form of sleep apnea. However, understanding the symptoms of this disorder can help you take the next step in getting a proper diagnosis.
While sleep apnea is typically associated with loud snoring and gasps for air in the middle of the night, it’s important to also be on the lookout for other common signs such as:
- Morning headaches
- Excessive daytime drowsiness
- Lack of energy throughout the day
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Changes in overall mood
- Frequent nighttime urination
If you experience any of these symptoms, we highly recommend contacting our office so one of our doctors can give you a proper diagnosis. Even if you don’t have sleep apnea, you may have some other form of sleep disorder that we can help treat.
The Importance of Treating Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea doesn’t just impact the quality of your sleep — your mental and physical health may also be at risk. If left untreated, this harmful sleep disorder can increase your risk for any number of serious medical complications, including:
- Metabolic disease
- Anxiety and depression
- Type 2 diabetes
- Accidents caused by fatigue
- Liver problems
- Heart disease
Treatment for sleep apnea can help alleviate your symptoms and improve your body’s health in the process. The most common method used for sleep apnea is a CPAP machine, but many patients find them intrusive, uncomfortable, and noisy.
That’s why we offer patients comfortable CPAP alternatives to ensure that you get a good night’s sleep without the extra hassle that comes from treating your sleep apnea.
Benefits of Oral Appliances
For patients who want an alternative method for treating their sleep apnea, our doctors can recommend oral appliances, which are just as effective as CPAP machines. Patients no longer have to deal with the unnecessary difficulty that comes from handling a bulky contraption like CPAP machines.
Mouthpieces similar to oral appliances don’t carry the same issues, and most of our patients generally prefer them to CPAP. Our doctor will take impressions of your teeth to help create an appliance that fits comfortably in your mouth while you sleep. Oral appliances are portable and can often fit in a small case that’s easy to carry.
Frequently Asked Questions
What if I don’t seek treatment for sleep apnea?
Not treating your sleep apnea can put you at risk for further health complications that may require more invasive treatment. It’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible, as sleep apnea doesn’t go away on its own. If left untreated, OSA can take a serious toll on your physical and mental health, with the consequences also being potentially life-threatening.
Can sleep apnea affect my mental health?
Sleep apnea can have a negative impact on their mental health. When your body doesn’t get the necessary rest it needs, you may have a difficult time focusing and struggle with trying to stay awake. It’s important to treat your sleep apnea symptoms so that your mind gets the necessary rest it needs to take on the day.
Does sleep apnea cause weight gain?
While there’s no direct correlation between sleep apnea and weight gain, symptoms of this sleep disorder may indirectly lead to changes in your weight. When your body doesn’t get the rest it needs, this can slow down your metabolism and cause you to feel sluggish in the morning. You may even feel too tired to get the proper exercise or healthy foods you need.
By managing your symptoms of sleep apnea, not only will you get a good night’s sleep, but you’ll also be energized enough to take charge of your weight.
Contact Us For CPAP Alternatives
It’s important to treat your sleep apnea symptoms to get a good night’s sleep. Instead of tolerating bulky CPAP machines, our doctors can help you find an alternative that works for you such as oral appliances. Contact Summit Dental Care by calling (208) 733-9999.