Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that has the potential to be quite serious. The issue requires treatment so an individual can get u uninterrupted sleep. There are treatments available that can help improve your sleep and your health. Cicero Family Dental Care understands this disorder and can help you get started with a treatment plan that will improve your health.
What Happens When You Have Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder. It happens when a person’s breathing is interrupted during their sleep. A person with sleep apnea will stop breathing and then begin breathing again while they are sleeping. These interruptions can happen to some people hundreds of times in one night, leaving them exhausted during the day. These interruptions also leave the brain lacking the oxygen needed to function. Untreated sleep apnea can lead to an increase in health conditions like high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases.
What Causes Sleep Apnea?
There are three different types of sleep apnea and each has a different underlying cause. Obstructive sleep apnea is caused by the muscles of the throat relaxing too much while you sleep. This causes your airway to collapse and a person can struggle to breathe. Central sleep apnea happens when your brain stops sending messages telling the body to breathe while sleeping. The final type of sleep apnea is complex sleep apnea and it is a combination of both the central and obstructive types.
Are Some People More At Risk For Sleep Apnea?
Some individuals are more prone to this condition than others. People who smoke, drink, and who are obese are at risk for developing obstructive sleep apnea. So are people who have naturally narrow airways and a thick neck circumference. Those who have a family history of the disease are also at risk. Health conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and Parkinson's disease put a person at higher risk. Men seem to develop the condition more than women.
How Is Sleep Apnea Treated?
The first line of treatment for sleep apnea is to remove the conditions that are causing it. Overweight patients will need to lose weight and smokers will need to quit smoking. To help reduce complications in the meantime, many patients will need to use a CPAP machine. A continuous positive airway pressure machine (CPAP) provides air pressure that helps keep air passages open. This can help with any breathing pauses and with excessive snoring. Other treatment options include providing supplemental oxygen, an oral device to keep the airways open, other ventilation devices, and even surgery.
What Are The Signs That A Person May Have Sleep Apnea?
For many individuals, the first signs are excessive tiredness during the day, difficultly concentrating, dry throats, and headaches upon waking up. If a person lives with someone else their roommates will notice excessively loud snoring, they can report hearing the person making gasping or choking sounds during their sleep, and may also observe moments of the individual not breathing.
Sleep apnea is a serious condition that requires treatment. Without seeking care, this condition can trigger even more health problems in the affected individuals. Cicero Family Dental Care is trained to assess and help their patients treat their sleep apnea issues. Call our office today at (680) 688-6026 to schedule your consultation.