The trouble with snoring is that not everyone understands the potential seriousness of the condition. In addition to the aggravation your sleeping partner may experience at being constantly woken up by the noise, there are also several ways in which snoring could affect your overall health. In fact, snoring is often a telltale symptom of a sleep disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, which can lead to chronic sleep and oxygen deprivation if not treated effectively.
From Snoring to Sleep Apnea
Snoring is a common phenomenon that occurs when your airway is partially blocked in your sleep, usually by nasal, oral, and/or throat tissues. How loud you snore depends on how obstructed your airway is, and in minor cases, it may be alleviated with simple measures like sleeping on your side or stomach instead of your back.
Obstructive sleep apnea, which is marked by periods of extremely loud snoring, involves the complete blockage of your airway, forcing you to stop breathing repeatedly during sleep. As your airway grows more obstructed, the sound of snoring will grow louder, until it stops completely as your airway is closed. After a few moments, your body will wake up enough to start breathing, and the cycle will begin again, repeating itself hundreds of times a night.
Sleep Peacefully with Help from Your Dentist
Because of the constant interruptions, OSA prevents patients from entering a deep sleep, which in turn can lead to symptoms of sleep deprivation. Even if your snoring is just snoring, it can force your body to work harder to obtain less oxygen. Therfore, ignoring it can also increase your risks of certain cardiovascular issues. To treat your snoring or obstructive sleep apnea, we may recommend a custom-designed sleep guard, which will help keep your jaw comfortably situated and your airway open while you sleep.
ABOUT YOUR SOUTHLAKE DENTISTS:
As a native Texan, Gregory Wright, DDS, opened his private practice in Southlake, TX in 1992. He and Dr. Victoria Heron are happily accepting new patients from Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, Trophy Club, Colleyville, and all surrounding communities. To learn more, call our office today at (817) 481-7999.