Sleep Apnea Risks

For those who have it, and for those who love those who have it, sleep apnea is a serious problem. Sleep apnea is a disorder in which the throat muscles relax during sleep, resulting in a blocked airway. There is help: Sleep Apnea & TMJ Solutions in Brentwood TN specializes in treating sleep apnea.

One of the scary things about sleep apnea is that people with the condition often do not realize they have it. There is no blood test for it, or any other simple test that would reveal it’s there. Experts say that detection of sleep apnea often comes from things that the patient tells his or her doctor, like feeling exhausted during the day in spite of what seems like a good night’s sleep.

Detection might also come from things noticed by a bed partner. Snoring, while in and of itself does not mean sleep apnea, is an indicator.

The reason that sleep apnea is so worrisome is that it deprives the brain of oxygen. Sufferers may awake with a start, gasping for air, or simply snort, roll over, and go back to sleep. It has also been linked to potentially life-threatening conditions like heart disease, stroke, and insulin resistance, which often precedes Type 2 diabetes.

The following things can put people at risk of developing sleep apnea, or making an existing condition worse:

  • Weight gain
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Certain medications
  • Smoking
  • Sleep position
  • Other medical conditions

Treatments for sleep apnea include a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure device, called C-PAP for short. This has proven to be very effective, though some patients find it cumbersome.

Another option is an appliance that is worn like a mouthguard. This, too, is known to be effective, and more comfortable than a C-PAP.

At Poss Sleep Apnea & TMJ Solutions in Brentwood TN, we provide diagnosis and treatment to those with sleep apnea. If you or a loved one is coping with a sleep disorder, do not hesitate: contact us today.