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Obstructive Sleep Apnea and How to Manage It

Posted on 1/11/2021 by Office
Obstructive Sleep Apnea and How to Manage ItIt is estimated that about 22 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea and 80% of these have moderate to severe conditions. However, doctors believe that the number may be higher since many people with sleep apnea remain undiagnosed.

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea is a nocturnal sleeping disorder that results in a cessation of breathing for short intervals. This happens when your throat muscles relax during sleep and obstruct your airways. As a result, your breathing stops for a short while and your body has to wake you up so that you can resume breathing.

In many cases, the patient wakes up for a fraction of a second, which is the reason why most people do not remember these episodes when they wake up. However, there are certain symptoms that can indicate you have sleep apnea.

Common Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

Some common symptoms of sleep apnea include:

•  Snoring loudly
•  Making gasping, spluttering, or choking noises in the night.
•  Feeling unrested when you wake up.
•  Difficulty in concentrating.
•  Waking up with a sore throat and a dry mouth.
•  Waking up feeling short of breath.
•  Having mood swings.

Untreated sleep apnea can result in many health issues like heightened stress and anxiety, poor immune system, acid reflux, and risk of heart attack and stroke.

Treatment for Improving Sleep Quality

Sleep apnea may respond well to a few changes in lifestyle:

•  Maintaining a healthy weight as sleep apnea is sometimes associated with obesity.
•  Managing your stress levels through meditation and yoga.
•  Reducing alcohol consumption and that can overly relax throat muscles.
•  Avoiding caffeine in the night as that can lead to sleeplessness.
•  Quitting smoking as that can inflame the throat.
•  Making a habit of sleeping on your side.
•  Setting and keeping a bedtime schedule.
•  Avoiding eating two to three hours before bedtime.

If you have moderate or severe sleep apnea that does not respond well to conservative methods, it is best to consult Tania Tran, DMD and at Grove Street Family Dentistry. Call us today at (360) 659-3200 to schedule an appointment.

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Dental Blog | Tania Tran, DMD - Grove Street Family Dentistry
Dr. Tania Tran has provided this educational blog as a resource for the community. We hope that this blog will cover subjects you may be interested in. Call us!
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