In some cases, snoring can be caused by overweight, cold, alcohol use, or old age. But snoring can also be caused by an underlying condition known as sleep apnea. The team of dentists at Pearlfection Dentistry in Fredrick, MD is dedicated to offering the best quality dental services, general, pediatric, and cosmetic dental treatments as well as oral surgery.
What You Need to Know About Sleep Apnea
While most Fredrick residents who snore do not suffer from sleep apnea, typically people who do have sleep apnea snore quite loudly. This condition can be dangerous if it is not treated. Sleep apnea occurs when your normal breathing pattern is interrupted during sleep. There are two types of sleep apnea:
- Obstructive sleep apnea: causing the airflow to lessen or stop completely.
- Central sleep apnea: the brain sends incorrect signals to the brain, disrupting breathing.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a much more common form.
Who Is at Risk of Sleep Apnea?
You may be at a higher risk of sleep apnea if:
- You are overweight or obese
- You are over the age of 60
- You are a woman
- You have an enlarged tongue or narrow throat
- You drink alcohol
- You smoke
Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Signs and symptoms of this condition include:
- Gasping during sleep
- Frequent waking during the night
- Night sweats
- Dry mouth
- Morning headaches
- Unrefreshing sleep
If left untreated, over time, sleep apnea can cause high blood pressure, which increases your risk of stroke and heart disease.
Treatment for Sleep Apnea
In many cases, making some simple lifestyle changes is all it takes to resolve sleep apnea. In other more severe cases, a CPAP machine may be helpful. In very severe cases, surgery may be recommended.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of the dental specialists at Pearlfection Dentistry, call the Fredrick office at (301) 663-5550.