Snoring is not only disruptive to the snorer’s bed partner (and sometimes disruptive to the entire family!), but can also be an indication of a more serious medical problem called Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
Typically, someone with obstructive sleep apnea will snore heavily, then stop breathing for a period of time. The pause in breathing could last for as little as a few seconds, or even up to minutes at a time! The bed partner will observe that the person struggles to breathe but there is no snoring sound. These periods of lack of breathing are followed by sudden attempts to breathe often accompanied by a gasping or choking sound.
Reason 1: Excessive daytime sleepiness
If you tend to “nod off” while sitting quietly at home, at work, on the phone or while driving, it could be a sign that you are not getting refreshing sleep at night. This can lead to mood disorders, stress on personal relationships, work-related accidents and even car accidents. A Canadian study reported that people with sleep apnea are twice as likely to be in a car crash. They reported that even people with fairly mild sleep apnea had an increased risk of serious crashes. Truckers associations are informing truck drivers of sleep apnea's seriousness.
Sleepiness related to sleep apnea has also been linked to the Exxon Valdez oil spill, the Chernobyl disaster and Three Mile Island.
Reason 2: Snoring
Almost all people who have sleep apnea snore; but not everyone who snores has sleep apnea. The only way to be sure you or your loved one’s snoring is not a more serious medical condition is to talk to your health professional about a sleep study.
Reason 3: Regular breathing stops while sleeping
The snorer’s bed partner may notice frequent times through the night when the snorer stops breathing. The number of times a patient stops breathing will determine the level of severity of Obstructive Sleep Apnea – mild, moderate or severe.
Stopping breathing for 10 seconds or more while sleeping:
Reason 4: Gasping or choking while sleeping
When the throat collapses during sleep, the brain forces you to partially awaken to breathe. This can happen many times during an hour and keep you from getting the deep sleep you need.
Reason 5: Feeling unrefreshed in the morning
Because you are not getting the sleep you need, you may feel more tired in the morning after a night's sleep than you did the night before. This can also cause problems with memory, concentration and personality changes.
Reason 6: Heartburn or a sour taste in the morning or at night
Many people with sleep apnea regurgitate stomach acid while sleeping. This is known as GERD and can cause problems with your esophagus and your teeth.
Reason 7: Headaches, sore throat or dry mouth in the morning
Almost half the people with sleep apnea have headaches due to a poor night's sleep.
Reason 8: Sexual dysfunction
It's true! Obstructive sleep apnea sufferers may experience a lack of sexual desire because of fatigue. In men, sleep apnea can be a cause of Erectile Dysfunction (ED).
Reason 9: Sweating and chest pain at night
Cardiac deaths occur in the early morning hours with people who suffer from sleep apnea.
Something else you should be aware of - shirt collar size is a good indicator of sleep apnea, especially in people with high blood pressure and those who awake gasping and choking at night. If you are a woman and have a neck size of 16 inches or more, or you are a man with a shirt collar neck size of 17 inches or more and have any of the above reasons to be concerned, please check with your doctor.
If you or a loved one has experienced any of these symptoms regularly, it could be untreated obstructive sleep apnea. Contact your Isn’t Sexy dentist today for a consultation to discover if your snore is something more.
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When I was diagnosed with severe Sleep Apnea and I was told I had to wear a CPAP machine for the rest of my life, everytime I went to sleep I was very upset and scared. I started using the CPAP but felt uncomfortable all night. Then I found Dr. Stern on the internet and decided to see him. He introduced me to this really cool oral appliance that is practically transparent. I was not sure if it would work however decided to go for it.(I finally returned my CPAP machine). I have to tell you it is the best thing that has ever happened to me. I sleep much better and wake up fresh every day. I can toss and turn and walk around with it if I need to. It fits perfectly over my teeth and is very easy to remove. I am thankful to Dr. Stern and his team for changing my life. I will recommend using the oral appliance to anyone who has Sleep Apnea. It will change your life forever!. Thank you Dr. Stern you are the BEST!
"Dr. Stern and his team have delivered! My wife and I thank you so much . My Oral Sleep appliance is a Miracle"
Many thanks to Dr. Stern and the oral appliance he prescribed me. With his help I am sleeping much better and have more energy. My wife also sleeps better knowing I no longer snore. I have my life back !!
Wow! What a difference the Silencer appliance has made in my life. I sleep better. I wake up less tired and best of all my wife loves it.
You saved my marriage!
I was afraid I would choke during my sleep. I would wake up exhausted. I used to pull over to the side of the road to rest ,so as not to fall asleep at the wheel of my car. I was scared to drive because of my sleep apnea. Let alone sleeping in another room bcause of the loud snoring that prevented my wife from having a good night's sleep. Not anymore ,thanks to Dr. Stern and my oral appliance. Now I wake up more refreshed without feeling like I am choking in my sleep. I am way less tired during the day and don't need to take my power naps anymore. Best of all I'm back in the same bed with my wife!
I tried everything and nothing worked. I'm happy my doctor recomended oral appliance treatment. My husband says I don't snore, and I wake up more refreshed inthe morning. Thanks so very much!
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