What Is Sleep Apnea & How Do You Treat It?

A good night’s sleep impacts every aspect of your health and daily life. It allows you to look, feel, and perform your best. Sleep apnea, a potentially serious sleep disorder, can interfere with your sleep, which can negatively affect your health and wellbeing. Your trusted team at Floss City Dental is proud to offer sleep apnea solutions to help you to enjoy restful sleep and improve the quality of your life.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

The most common type of this chronic sleep disorder is known as obstructive sleep apnea. This occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat relax, allowing the soft tissue to collapse and constrict the airway as you breathe in, resulting in lower blood oxygen levels. The brain senses the inability to breathe, briefly rousing you from your sleep to help reopen the airway. This pattern may repeatedly happen through the night, preventing you from reaching the deep, restful phases of sleep.

What Are the Symptoms of Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea symptoms include episodes in which the patient stops breathing during sleep, often witnessed by a partner or family member. Patients may snore loudly, choke, and gasp for air during sleep. Symptoms of sleep apnea also include waking up with a dry mouth, morning headaches, difficulty staying asleep (insomnia), daytime fatigue, trouble focusing, irritability, and memory loss.

How Does Sleep Apnea Affect Your Health?

The quality of your sleep can impact your health, wellbeing, and your overall quality of life. Sleep apnea disrupts your sleep and poses a threat to your safety as it increases the risk of workplace or driving accidents due to fatigue. It can also leave you susceptible to severe health problems, including high blood pressure, heart and liver problems, stroke, obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, chronic acid reflux, complications with medications and surgery, and more.

Treating Sleep Apnea

The first step to treatment is diagnosing sleep apnea. That usually involves a sleep evaluation through in-lab or at-home sleep studies, which provide data to help diagnose and determine the severity of the condition. Treatment options include the use of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices, oral appliance therapy, or in some cases, surgery.

Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy involves the use of a machine that provides a steady stream of air through a mask at a pressure just high enough to prevent the collapse of your airway. Oral appliance therapy, on the other hand, involves the use of a specialized, custom-fitted mouthguard worn during sleep, which works to keep the airway open, providing both snoring and sleep apnea relief. Many patients find oral appliances more comfortable than CPAP masks. If CPAP therapy and oral appliance therapy do not alleviate the condition, surgical intervention may be recommended.

Sleep Apnea Management Near Me

Contact Floss City Dental in Plano, TX, to learn more about sleep apnea and how it can impact your health. Your trusted team of highly experienced professionals will work with you to manage and treat your condition. We look forward to helping you enjoy restful, rejuvenating sleep. Call us today!