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Sleep Apnea: When Snoring Becomes Dangerous

Everybody makes at least some noise when they sleep. If you have snoring on occasion, that’s probably no big deal. But it can become a problem if you’re snoring loudly and almost all the time because that is a sign you may have sleep apnea.

This is more than just annoying snoring. Sleep apnea can lead to many health risks, including heart disease and hypertension. That’s why you need to call our Acworth, GA dental office today at 770-615-7326 for sleep apnea treatment. Our dentists are highly trained in delivering the help you need to stay asleep and healthy.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

People with sleep apnea will stop breathing while they’re asleep. This happens slowly as your throat muscles relax too much and weigh down on your airway. As this happens, the airway gets tighter, which is where the snoring sound comes from. Eventually, you stop breathing all together.

Your body panics, and you wake up instantly. However, this also tightens your throat muscles and ends the problem. In fact, you never really wake up — you just stop being in a restful sleep period. Then you fall back asleep, only to be woken up by not breathing again. This harmful cycle can repeat itself over 200 times each night.

That’s why sleep apnea is a serious problem. You stop breathing repeatedly while trying to get a good night’s rest. As you can see, that’s not going to happen with sleep apnea. Instead of getting the rest your mind and body need, you wake up each morning unrested.

Symptoms Of Sleep Apnea

Loud and chronic snoring is the biggest sign that you could have sleep apnea, but there are others:

  • Waking most mornings still feeling tired and exhausted.
  • Having problems with fatigue during the day.
  • Unexplained weight gain.
  • Moodiness and irritability.
  • Problems focusing at work or school.

Why Untreated Sleep Apnea Is Dangerous

Is losing sleep really that bad? If you were talking about the occasional sleepless night, then no. You could make up the lost sleep the next night. But with sleep apnea, you’re hardly ever getting the rest your mind and body need. That’s why you can face these problems and more.

CAR ACCIDENTS

Why is it illegal to text and drive? Because when you’re distracted, you’re more likely to get into an accident that seriously hurts you or others. All it takes is a moment of distraction at the wrong time. When you’re exhausted from sleep apnea interrupting your rest so often, you’re not able to stay focused on the road. That means you’re more likely to get into an accident.

DEPRESSION AND IRRITABILITY

If you call someone “cranky,” you usually mean they didn’t get enough sleep and they’re a bit moody. That’s what can happen with sleep apnea. You’re tired all the time, so you can be irritable. The problem is that you can’t rest up and get rid of that irritability. If you feel that long enough, it can transform into depression.  

SLEEP BEHAVIORS

Sleep apnea keeps you in this weird state somewhere between awake and asleep. That makes you more likely to experience sleepwalking even if you never had before. But that’s just one form of sleep behavior. You could end up talking, eating, and even doing things in your sleep. Because you’re not really awake, your focus is off and you could have a bad accident.

HEART DISEASE & HYPERTENSION

If you don’t breathe right, then your body isn’t getting the oxygen it needs. When this happens, there’s still some in your bloodstream. So your heart goes into overdrive, pumping your blood hard so what little oxygen you have can get distributed throughout your body. This puts extra stress on your heart and blood vessels, leading to heart disease and hypertension.

Sleep Apnea Treatment

At our Acworth, GA dental office, you can be screened to see if you truly have sleep apnea. If so, we can help with sleep apnea treatment, including CPAP machines and an oral appliance. Both can help you keep breathing during the night so you can finally get some sleep.

Call Mountain View Dental today at 770-615-7326 to schedule your appointment for sleep apnea treatment.