Did you know that sleep apnea can be deadly? Although snoring can often be the subject of jokes, this common sleep disorder can wreak havoc on your overall health. After being diagnosed with this condition, patients are usually prescribed a CPAP machine, but the tubes can be cumbersome – and the air forced into your nose and throat can be uncomfortable. Rather than simply not treating this problem and letting your health suffer, you have dental alternatives to CPAP from Dr. Kelly LeBlanc at Family Dental on Louetta. In this post, he gives you the info you need on this condition, along with your options for dental treatment.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is the second most common sleep disorder behind insomnia. Most patients deal with obstructive sleep apnea – in this condition, the airway becomes blocked while you sleep. As you sleep, your tongue and jaw become relaxed and slide back against your throat, preventing you from breathing properly.
Since your brain is smart enough to know that you aren’t getting enough oxygen, it will wake you up, but only enough to make sure you start breathing again – not enough to make you realize you’re awake. These “micro-arousals” can happen hundreds of times a night, leaving you exhausted in the morning, but with no recollection of why you’re so tired.
What Are The Symptoms Of Sleep Apnea?
There are many symptoms of sleep apnea – some are so common that many people overlook them. Review this list and quiz yourself to see if you may be suffering from this sleep disorder.
- Daytime sleepiness and fatigue
- Dry mouth or sore throat when waking up
- Morning headaches
- Waking up gasping for breath or with the feeling of choking
- Sweating while sleeping
- Waking up to urinate
- Morning asthma symptoms or attacks during the night
- Trouble concentrating, forgetfulness, irritability, depression
- Sexual dysfunction
- Periods of not breathing during sleep (often noticed by a partner)
- Snoring – *although, you can still have sleep apnea if you don’t snore*
How Risky Is Untreated Sleep Apnea?
Since many patients can’t tolerate a CPAP machine, they often go without the treatment they need and put their lives at risk. Dr. LeBlanc warns against this, because not taking your sleep disorder seriously can lead to:
- High Blood Pressure
- Heart Attack
- Sudden Death
- Car Accidents
- Shortened Lifespan
What Are The Dental Treatment Options For Sleep Apnea?
Luckily, we can help – the team at Family Dental on Louetta can create a custom oral appliance for you that is similar in appearance to a nightguard. This device will gently shift your tongue and lower jaw out of the way to keep your airway open when you sleep. This dental sleep apnea treatment in Spring, TX is less expensive, much more comfortable, and extremely effective – oral appliances work for about 80% of patients.
Now that you know what sleep apnea is and that there are convenient dental treatment options, schedule your appointment with Dr. Kelly LeBlanc today to get a good night’s sleep and take back your health!