Sleep apnea is a serious disorder which can cause repeated interruption in breathing while a person is sleeping. Breathing may start or stop suddenly, sometimes hundreds of times a night. The result is a deprivation of oxygen in the brain.
There are two types of sleep apnea:
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA): The more common form of apnea, is caused by a blockage of the airway usually by the soft tissues in the back of the throat collapsing during sleep.
Central sleep apnea: Unlike OSA, with this form of sleep apnea the airway is not blocked, but the brain fails to signal the muscles to breathe normally, usually due to an instability of the respiratory control center.
Do I have Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea can affect anyone of any age, even children. Some risk factors of sleep apnea include:
- Being male
- Being overweight
- Being over age 40
- Having a large neck size (17 inches or greater in men and 16 inches or greater in women)
- Having large tonsils, a large tongue, or a small jaw bone
- Having a family history of sleep apnea
- Gastroesophageal reflux, or GERD
- Nasal obstruction due to a deviated septum, allergies, or sinus problems
What are the health risks of sleep apnea?
In addition to the detrimental effects of general fatigue and exhaustion, if left untreated, sleep apnea can result in a growing number of health related issues, including:
- High blood pressure
- Heart failure, irregular heart beats, and heart attacks
- Worsening of ADHD
- What can I do about Sleep Apnea?
What can I do about sleep apnea?
If you believe you have any type of medical problem, you should always first consult your physician. There are many treatments available for relieving the symptoms of sleep apnea, and restoring normal breathing at nighttime. Many of which are covered by insurance, and easily applicable depending on your situation. At Woodland Hills Dental, we understand your concerns and are ready to help anyone in North Richland Hills and surrounding 76182 area find a dental appliance which might help reduce sleep apnea. Call to schedule a consultation with Dr. Dillard, and start your road to recovery, and get the healthy uninterrupted sleep you need!