Getting good quality sleep enables you to wake up feeling rested and refreshed, ready to take on the tasks of your day. While many people experience the occasional bad night of sleep, leaving them feeling tired throughout the day, these days are few and far between. However, for millions of Americans, good quality sleep seems elusive. They wake up morning after morning feeling exhausted, which makes it hard to get through their days. If this sounds familiar, you may be living with a condition known as sleep apnea. Boones Landing Dental Center is here to help.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep involves cycles. There are two cycles that repeat several times throughout the course of the night. Your body has to go through these cycles to rest and repair itself, both physically and mentally. Sleep apnea is a condition that disrupts these sleep cycles. This condition causes you to stop breathing for several seconds several times a night, called apneic events.
Every time you wake up, your sleep cycles are disrupted. When you fall back to sleep, the cycles have to start all over again. There are different levels of sleep apnea that range from mild, 5 to 14 apneic events per sleeping hour, to severe, 30 or more events per sleeping hour. In most cases, you are completely unaware that you are waking up.
: This type of sleep apnea occurs when there is a failure of communication between your brain and the muscles that control breathing.
What are the Symptoms of Sleep Apnea?
There are several symptoms that can point to sleep apnea.
You find it difficult to focus.
Feeling excessively tired throughout the day.
Having a sore or dry throat when you wake up.
You may find that you have a hard time staying awake.
You feel irritable and have difficulty controlling your emotions.
If you have been suffering from sleep apnea for an extended period, you may also begin to notice health effects as well. This can include weight gain, hypertension, and fall ill more frequently. You are also at a greater risk of developing issues such as heart disease and diabetes.
How Do I Know if I Have Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea Appliances
To be treated for sleep apnea, you first need to be diagnosed. Diagnosing sleep apnea is done through a sleep study. This involves having you hooked up to computers while you sleep. The computers monitor your vitals as well as electrical impulses in your body and then record the information. A sleep specialist then analyzes the information and can make the diagnosis of sleep apnea or another sleep related issue.
What Treatments are Available for Sleep Apnea?
There are numerous treatments available for sleep apnea.
: Sometimes, weight loss can help improve or eliminate symptoms.
: For some, sleep apnea symptoms show up when sleeping on the back, but breathing returns to normal when sleeping on the side.
: A CPAP machine delivers a continuous stream of air through a mask worn over your nose while you sleep. The airflow keeps your airway open.
: An oral appliance is a device worn over your top teeth while you sleep. It is designed to hold your jaw in proper alignment, preventing it from sliding backward, and keep the airway open.
: In cases of severe sleep apnea, or when no other treatment has proven effective, you may be recommended for oral surgery. There are several different procedures that may be used depending on your specific situation.
With the right treatment, you can take care of your sleep apnea, and finally get the quality sleep you have been searching for. Call Boones Landing Dental Center today to find out how we can help (503) 601-0610.