Yes, you heard that right. Your dentist might be able to help you feel more energized during the day. Sleep apnea is a disorder where your breathing is consistently interrupted while you are asleep. More than 18 million American adults have been diagnosed – and many don’t even realize yet that they are not breathing properly at night.
How do you know whether it’s worth a look? Ask yourself whether this sounds like you, even a little-
- Do you wake up in the morning still feeling fatigued after a full night’s rest?
- Do you wake up with excessive dry mouth or a headache every morning?
- Do family members tell you that you snore, or gasp for air when you’re sleeping?
- Do you have trouble staying focused during the day?
- Do you experience insomnia?
These symptoms are the warning signs that you may have sleep apnea.
Although many of these symptoms are not immediately alarming, they can directly affect the amount of rest you are getting and have a negative impact on your health. Over the longer term, the consequences are more serious. You can have high blood pressure, strokes, heart attacks, diabetes, and depression if you have untreated sleep apnea.
So now what?
After hearing some of the basic symptoms, you might be thinking, “I am tired all the time…” First, don’t panic – instead, let’s take just one step forward. You may not have sleep apnea, but if you do, your dentist can help you find out whether you have it through a sleep study partner. Schedule an appointment with your dentist.
Here’s what we will help you discover –
If you do have sleep apnea, what type is it?
There are 2 types of sleep apnea. The first is called obstructive sleep apnea and is the most common type. This is when the muscles in your throat become too relaxed and close off the airway. The second type is central sleep apnea where the brain and breathing muscles have a disconnect and breathing is stopped.
What treatment is going to work best for you?
There are several treatment options to help those with sleep apnea disorder. Every person is different, so treatment types can vary. Sometimes simply adjusting the way that you sleep can make a difference, like moving from your back to your side. Other possibilities are a continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machine that keeps air flowing through your nasal cavity or an oral appliance that supports the jaw while you are sleeping. Surgery can be a consideration depending on the severity of the blockage in your airway.
Keep in mind, that treatment may or may not include a CPAP machine – so there’s no need to avoid the dentist just because you don’t like the idea of wearing one at night!
As dentists, we are trained to treat sleep apnea. Give us a call at Midlothian Dental Center, and we can help you get a good night’s sleep and find that energy you have been lacking.