Sleep is essential for a person’s physical and mental wellbeing. When we don’t get enough restful sleep, our bodies and brains can't function properly. Sleep allows our bodies to repair the heart and blood vessels, and it also helps balance our moods. People who suffer from sleep apnea are commonly at risk for other health issues because of their inability to get sufficient sleep. At Prairie Dental Care, we provide our patients with effective treatment to reduce or even eliminate their sleep apnea.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a medical condition that causes a person to have irregular breathing patterns during sleep. A person with sleep apnea usually experiences repetitive pauses in their breathing, which hinders oxygen from reaching the brain. Sleep apnea does not look the same for everyone. Some people snore, and others do not, but regardless, sleep apnea can cause damage to one’s health if left untreated.
Types of Sleep Apnea
There are three types of sleep apnea: obstructive, central, and mixed. Though each type of sleep apnea has different root causes, each has the same effect of causing people to repeatedly stop breathing during sleep.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) – OSA occurs when a person’s tongue or their throat’s soft tissue obstructs the airway.
Central sleep apnea – This type of sleep apnea occurs when the brain cannot signal the muscles needed to breathe.
Mixed sleep apnea – This condition is a combination of OSA and central sleep apnea. The person’s throat may be hindered somehow, and their brain is unable to properly communicate with the body to signal your breathing.
Because paused breathing doesn’t typically wake sleepers, they are not aware of their breathing patterns unless monitored by a loved one or a sleep specialist. Your doctor or sleep specialist can help you determine what type of sleep apnea you may have.
Common Signs of Sleep Apnea
Many times, sleep apnea can cause a pause in breathing, and people can also experience sleep problems. Because the airway is blocked during sleep, a person with sleep apnea cannot catch their breath or may not even be able to sleep restfully.
Some common signs of sleep apnea include:
- Chronic or loud snoring
- Gasping for air or choking during sleep
- Dry mouth
- Headaches in the morning
- Irritability and mood swings
- Difficulty concentrating
- Brain fog
If you experience any of these symptoms, you may have sleep apnea. However, the only way to tell for certain if you have this condition is to undergo a sleep study administered by your doctor or a licensed sleep specialist.
Health Risks of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea can be a serious condition because of how severely it can affect one’s sleep. Because of this, people with sleep apnea often experience shallow, fragmented sleep. Sleep apnea not only causes sleeping problems, but it can also lead to high blood pressure, strokes, diabetes, and heart disease. In the most severe cases, someone with sleep apnea can have brain damage or memory loss due to the lack of oxygen supply to their brains.
Your Trusted, Local Source for Sleep Apnea Treatment
If you need effective snoring treatment, Prairie Dental Care can help you finally get the full night’s sleep you deserve. As a dedicated and compassionate husband-and-wife team, Dr. Christine Wang and Dr. Xiaoyu Ma provide the community with various dentistry services, including treatment for chronic snoring caused by sleep apnea.
We serve North Aurora, Sugar Grove, Geneva, Batavia, Oswego, Montgomery, and beyond with unparalleled dental care. Not only do our expertise and experience make us unique, but our practice is also open on Saturdays, and we have Cantonese, Mandarin, and Spanish speakers on our team.