September 22, 2016
Everyone wants to sleep well. Indeed, health experts consider deep sleep to be an important part of recovery from daily activities.
When something or someone continues to disrupt your sleep throughout the night, you can feel it in the morning. You still feel tired, and you may have a headache.
You definitely don’t feel refreshed.
If you have sleep apnea, then you may wake up feeling this way more often than you care to admit. Then again, if you have to sleep next to someone with sleep apnea, you may be having trouble sleeping too as a result of your partner’s incessant snoring.
What can you — or your partner — do about this problem? You can call the dentists at the Davenport Dental Groups. We offer sleep apnea treatments at our dentist offices in Laredo, TX.
Sleep Apnea And Your Health
When you have sleep apnea, you stop breathing several times throughout the night. (Apnea comes from a Greek word meaning without breath.)
We don’t think we have to explain why breathing is important for your health. It’s something your body instinctively does, and when you stop breathing, your body will wake you up just long enough so you can take another breath.
If that sounds scary, we apologize, but this is the reality of having sleep apnea. A person with mild sleep apnea may stop breathing up to 14 times every hour. As you would expect, people with moderate and severe sleep apnea stop breathing even more frequently.
If you have obstructive sleep apnea (which is the most common type), then your breathing stoppages are the result of your airways becoming blocked. When you fall asleep, your muscles relax and the soft tissues around your airway can restrict your breathing.
A partial blockage will amplify the sound of your snoring (which is keeping your spouse awake) … at least until you stop breathing and this short snore-stop breathing-wake up cycle repeats itself.
Your constant waking means you don’t get deep, healthy sleep, and that can lead to sleep deprivation. This can explain why people with untreated sleep apnea are more than twice as likely as other drivers to be involved in an automotive accident.
People who have sleep apnea are more likely to have high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. It probably won’t surprise to know they have a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes as well.
The Symptoms Of Sleep Apnea
We already mentioned the two biggest ones — loud, constant snoring and frequent breathing stoppages. You may not be aware of these, but your partner probably is.
There are symptoms that you may notice while you are awake, however.
Waking up feeling as tired or even more tired when you went to bed is a clue that something is wrong.
Daytime sleepiness (a side effect of your sleep deprivation) is something to be aware of, too. You certainly don’t want this to happen at work or behind the wheel.
Those fatigued and sleepy feelings can make it difficult to concentrate on a task.
And if you do waking up regular feeling like you are gasping for breath, well, it’s definitely worth scheduling a sleep study to determine if you are suffering from sleep apnea or another sleep disorder.
Treating Your Sleep Apnea
If you sleep apnea is confirmed by a sleep study, you may be prescribed a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine.
CPAP users wear a mask while they sleep. The mask pushes air into their airways to keep them open so they can continue breathing.
If this works for you, great. Keep using the CPAP.
Unfortunately, CPAPs aren’t perfect. Some people find the masks irritating, and some people find the sound of the machine makes it more difficult to fall asleep
If you or your partner are in this group, then our dentists may have an another treatment option if you live in or near Laredo, TX.
Our dentists can help you get an oral appliance to wear while you sleep. By pulling your jaw forward slightly, your airways are more likely to stay open. This makes it more likely that you will stay asleep longer and less likely that you snore.
You will need a little time to get used to sleeping with this in your mouth, but when you do, it can make a big difference in how you feel in the morning and the rest of the day.
Do You Want To Sleep Better?
If your or someone else’s sleep apnea is interfering with your sleep, then it’s time to call Davenport Dental Group for help.