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What You Need to Know About Sleep Apnea & Sleep Loss

sedation_1 Bell Dental Group | Cincinnati, OH Dentist

Do you wake up feeling tired and grumpy? Does your bed partner complain that you snore all night long? If so, these are signs that you could be suffering from sleep apnea.

Sleep loss and lack of good quality sleep are far too common. One study found that as many as 4 percent of women and 9 percent of men overall have obstructive sleep apnea. But that figure may not tell the whole story – a more recent study showed that in the 30 to 60 age range, as many as 9 percent of women and a whopping 24 percent of men suffer from this harmful disease.

Sleep apnea has been linked to serious health consequences, including high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, and depression.

That’s why we take sleep apnea seriously at Bell Dental Group. Certainly, we want you to have the brightest, healthiest smile possible, but we also care about your overall health. We offer an effective solution through a comfortable oral device, proven to help reduce the symptoms of sleep apnea and let you achieve better total body health.

Learn the Facts About Sleep Apnea

You may be wondering what sleep apnea actually is and if you might have it. There are two types of sleep apnea, central sleep apnea and obstructive sleep apnea. Central sleep apnea involves the brain not sending the proper signals to the muscles that control breathing.

Obstructive sleep apnea is much more common, however. It occurs when your air passages become temporarily blocked while sleeping. While it is normal for the tongue and other soft tissues in the back of your throat to relax when you sleep, several factors can cause these tissues to relax too much and obstruct your airway.

Age is a big factor, as all of our muscles relax and tend to droop as we get older. In addition, if you’re overweight, excess fatty tissues around the airway contribute to blockage. Alcohol, smoking, and even some medications can also increase muscle relaxation. Even sleep posture plays a role, as sleep apnea occurs more often when you’re sleeping on your back.

When an episode of sleep apnea occurs, your brain sends your body a signal to wake up momentarily to take in more air. Once your body receives more oxygen, you drift off to sleep once more – until the cycle repeats itself. For severe sleep apnea sufferers, sleep could be disrupted dozens of times per hour, or hundreds of times during the night (or day) – all without the sufferer being aware of it.

Besides loss of sleep and poor sleep quality, snoring usually accompanies sleep apnea. As air tries to move past those soft tissues that are blocking the airway, they can vibrate, resulting in loud and bothersome noise.

That’s why snoring is one of the first signs that you could be suffering from sleep apnea. Other signs of inadequate sleep include frequent headaches, especially upon waking, a dry or sore throat in the morning, and the inability to focus at work or while studying.

Get Effective Treatment for Sleep Apnea & Snoring

That’s where our treatment comes in. We’ll examine you and help you set up with a sleep study if needed. If a physician determines that your sleep problems are related to sleep apnea, we can fit you with a comfortable oral appliance that you’ll wear while sleeping. It will slip easily into place and won’t interfere with your ability to relax or sleep.

This device will gently move your lower jaw forward to help keep your airway open and unobstructed. The result will be reduced or eliminated episodes of sleep apnea, less snoring, increased alertness and focus, and potentially better overall health.

With our treatment and help, you’ll sleep better and feel better – and so will your bed partner! You’ll function better at work, experience fewer feelings of depression, have a better outlook on life, and perhaps even improve your relationships with those around you.

Most importantly, you’ll reduce your risk of serious health consequences that could result in debilitation and even death. We don’t want to be too morbid, however continued sleep loss plays a huge role in your long-term health. Seeking out treatment now will not only give you a better quality of life, it can actually help you live longer.

We Offer an Alternative to CPAP Therapy

One of the aspects of our sleep loss treatment that patients enjoy most is its simplicity. Unlike a bulky, noisy, cumbersome CPAP machine, your oral appliance will be easy to carry on trips and getaways.

It won’t require any electricity so you won’t have to worry about plugging it in. It will also be discreet and won’t cause you embarrassment like an unattractive CPAP mask can. Plus, it will be comfortable and won’t make you feel claustrophobic.

Sleep apnea can cause significant health problems. For your sake and the sake of your loved ones, don’t let sleep loss put your health at risk any longer. Find out more today by calling 513-802-9440 to schedule a consultation. Or fill out our online form to request an appointment.

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