Sleep apnea is a life-threatening condition which increases your risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, mood disorders, serious car crashes, and other potential causes of injury, illness, and death. Fortunately, it can be easily treated, and many of the risks diminish significantly or disappear entirely with treatment.
The longer you wait to get treatment, the higher your risks. Please don’t wait, call (619) 299-5925 or email Strober Dental in San Diego for help getting a diagnosis or finding a new treatment option.
Understanding Sleep Apnea
In obstructive sleep apnea, your airway closes completely at night when you sleep, cutting off your air supply. When your brain becomes deprived of oxygen, it is forced to awaken partly to restore breathing, and it orders your heart to beat harder and faster. The results are that you never reach the deeper, restorative levels of sleep, your brain suffers intermittent oxygen shortages, and your cardiovascular system is put under stress.
There is also a less common form of the disorder called central sleep apnea in which your brain just stops telling your body to breathe. Most people who have this type also have obstructive sleep apnea.
How Do You Know If It’s Sleep Apnea?
Although you may awaken hundreds of times a night, you won’t be aware of the disorder. Your parnter may notice that your snoring ends abruptly in a choking sound, which is a strong sign that you may suffer from this. Often, though, you have to look for symptoms you can identify while awake, such as:
- Waking without feeling rested
- Waking with a headache
- Daytime sleepiness
- Loss of concentration
- Loss of motivation or interest
- Mood disorders
- High blood pressure
- Coronary artery disease
You should also ask your doctor for more information if you have suffered a heart attack or stroke.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, the most common treatment your doctor will likely recommend is CPAP. This is considered the gold standard treatment, and it is the only treatment recommended for severe and central sleep apnea. However, many people find it uncomfortable, inconvenient, and otherwise hard to use.
We offer a more convenient and comfortable alternative, just an oral appliance, like a sports mouthguard, that you put in before going to sleep. It’s easy to use, comfortable, and for many sufferers it works as well as CPAP.