May 16, 2017
The only thing worse than being kept awake half the night by someone snoring is when you’re the one doing the snoring. That’s because bad snoring like that can be a sign you have sleep apnea. If not taken care of, this condition can lead to serious health problems like high blood pressure, heart disease, and depression.
Call either of our Connecticut dental offices (203-916-9348 for Bridgeport/Trumbull and 203-212-8259 for Stratford) to schedule sleep apnea treatment. Even though this condition is not rare, there are still many myths surrounding it. Knowing the truth can help you realize the danger it poses — and how you can get help.
What Is Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is the name for when you stop breathing while asleep. There are a few kinds of sleep apnea, but the most common one is called obstructive sleep apnea. Here’s what typically happens:
- You fall asleep and your muscles relax like they normally do.
- But your throat muscles relax so much that their weight starts to bend your airway. This causes the bad snoring associated with sleep apnea.
- Eventually, your airway is obstructed and you cannot breathe.
- You start to panic, but as soon as you begin waking up, those throat muscles stop doing that.
- Now that you can breathe again, you start to fall asleep again.
This cycle continues over and over again, preventing you from getting the real sleep you need but never truly waking you up either. Some people can have this sleep apnea cycle over 200 times in the usual eight hours of sleep.
That’s why you need to call DeJesus Dental Group today if you are snoring badly. It’s not just one bad night. It’s many, many bad nights piled together.
Here’s The Truth About Sleep Apnea
MYTH: If you snore any, then you have sleep apnea.
TRUTH: Snoring is only one possible sign you have sleep apnea.
As your airway bends and closes up in obstructive sleep apnea, trying to force the same amount of air through that narrow passage creates vibration and noise. That’s why snoring is such a big sign of sleep apnea.
However, that is not the only sign. Unexplained weight gain, irritability, and chronic fatigue can also indicate sleep apnea. Plus, no one is ever quiet when they sleep.
MYTH: Sleep apnea is nothing to worry about, and you can catch up on sleep anytime.
TRUTH: The continuous loss of sleep can be dangerous to you.
Some people don’t give sleep the respect it deserves. They think they can stay up late, miss lots of sleep, and just catch up on the weekends. But with sleep apnea, that’s rarely true. You’re missing out on needed sleep just about every night, even on weekends.
Losing that much sleep is dangerous. People who are sleep-deprived due to sleep apnea can face problems with depression, obesity, heart disease, and high blood pressure. You can even get into car accidents because you’re so tired and can’t stay focused.
MYTH: If you have sleep apnea, you need a CPAP machine.
TRUTH: Many people can get sleep apnea treatment with a dental splint.
CPAP stands for “Continuous Positive Airway Pressure”. It’s one way to get sleep apnea treatment. You get a machine that pumps air through a mask, and you wear that mask over your face and nose as they sleep. This creates enough air pressure in your throat to help it stay clear while you sleep.
However, many people can get help from our Connecticut dentists using a dental splint. This small device shifts your jaw just enough so your airway stays open.
MYTH: Only overweight, older men get sleep apnea.
TRUTH: They are more prone to it, but anyone can get sleep apnea.
Some people think of loud snoring and immediately think about older, overweight men. That demographic does have a higher risk for getting sleep apnea. That said, this condition can happen to almost anyone. Even young, thin women can have problems with obstructive sleep apnea.
Call either of our Connecticut dental offices (203-916-9348 for Bridgeport/Trumbull and 203-212-8259 for Stratford) to schedule your next appointment for sleep apnea treatment. Don’t let this condition rob you of the sleep your body (and mind) need each day.