Chronic Snoring Treatment Scottsdale, AZ
Sleep Apnea or snoring is caused by the upper airway being completely blocked and not allowing air into the lungs. Sleep apnea is a potentially life-threatening condition that affects more than 40 million Americans. Eric Wiitala, DDS is here to help.
Snoring, in many cases, is a slightly annoying condition. However, there is a danger in assuming that chronic snoring is nothing more than that. If you snore on a nightly basis, you could benefit from learning more about common sleep disorders like sleep apnea. Visit us in Scottsdale, AZ to discuss sleep apnea with our experts.
Common Sleep Disorders
Of the most common sleep disorders, which include narcolepsy, restless leg syndrome, sleep apnea, and insomnia, sleep apnea affects millions of people around the world. This condition can be challenging not because it is difficult to treat, but because it so closely resembles snoring that many people do not obtain the care they need to restore health.
How Sleep Apnea Differs from Snoring
When you snore, air has slight difficulty passing through the airway. When breathing occurs, forced air causes vibrations in the soft tissues in the throat and beyond. The sounds that are made indicate that air is moving. People with sleep apnea do more than snore; they stop breathing. When pauses in breath occur, the brain jumps into action to regain its supply of oxygen. The body is jolted with adrenaline, which speeds the heart and rouses sleep just enough to restart breathing.
Do you have signs of Sleep Apnea?
Just because you snore does not mean you have sleep apnea. Signs of sleep apnea include:
- Extreme fatigue during waking hours
- Microsleeps, or falling asleep in your car or at your desk
- Poor concentration
- Poor memory and cognitive function
- Persistent irritability
- Frequent morning headaches or a sore throat
- New or worsening anxiety or depression
If you or someone you love experiences these symptoms, a sleep study can be performed to identify the cause of sleep loss.
Why Sleep is Important to your Health
Most people benefit the most from 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night. After just a few nights of poor sleep, unhealthy symptoms develop. Data from multiple research studies demonstrates that a lack of sleep increases the risk of automobile crashes, poor decision-making, and several serious health conditions. Individuals whose quality of sleep is poor have a greater risk of heart disease and stroke, as well as Type II diabetes. Sleep is necessary to regulate mood and to keep the immune system functioning at optimal levels.
Sleep apnea can shorten your life! In one 18-year study, the risk of death was 3.2 times higher for participants whose severe sleep apnea was not treated.
Certain factors are considered during the diagnosis of sleep apnea such as:
- Menopause. Post-menopausal women are at an increased risk.
- Obesity. Excess tissue can prevent adequate air flow.
- Excessive neck circumference. 17 inches in men and 16 in women.
Other serious health conditions caused by sleep apnea:
- Daytime sleepiness
- High blood pressure
- Headaches (especially in the am)
- Teeth grinding
- Memory problems
- Sexual dysfunction
- Acid reflux
Treating Sleep Apnea
Today, it is possible to seek treatment for sleep apnea from a medical doctor or your dentist. The standard medical therapy, CPAP, is effective, but compliance tends to be low. A CPAP patient must wear a mask hooked up to hoses and a breathing machine. Often disrupting their bed partners sleep. Every year nearly 900,000 patients do not use their new prescribed CPAP because they are their sleeping partner does not like it, wasting thousands of dollars in every case. Dr. Wiitala offers a CPAP alternative, oral appliance therapy.
Are you interested in learning more about sleep apnea or CPAP alternatives? Visit dentist Dr. Eric Wiitala in Scottsdale today and see how you can be on your way to a better nights sleep. Dr. Wiitala is a proud member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. He wants you to get the sleep you need. Contact Eric Wiitala, DDS for more information on oral appliance therapy for obstructive sleep apnea.
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