Millions of Americans each night are not obtaining the proper amount of restorative SLEEP due to snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea. When an individual snores, the muscles in the throat relax, which narrows the airway. The air being pushed through these soft tissues cause them to vibrate and produce the sound of snoring. Snoring alone is not a health risk, however, when irregular breathing patterns are paired with periods of time where you stop breathing and then gasping for air you may have more serious disorder known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is a common yet highly under diagnosed disorder that robs the body of its ability to THRIVE. When a person is experiencing an apnea event, they can stop breathing for several seconds to several minutes at a time. Each time an apnea event takes place; oxygen falls quickly to dangerously low levels, triggering stress hormones to alert the body to gasp for air. These gasps for air also break the SLEEP and DREAM cycle and prevent the body from getting the restorative SLEEP it needs to function optimally.
Here are some signs that you may have Obstructive Sleep Apnea:
The most frightening aspect of this disorder is that many of the sufferers do not even know that it is affecting them. An individual with Obstructive Sleep Apnea can have hundreds of apneic events every night and not even be aware of it.
This disorder not only takes away your SLEEP health but has also been associated with several other medical conditions including:
The standard option for treating Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the use of a CPAP machine to keep the airway open during Sleep. The CPAP machine is made of an air pump with plastic tubing attached to a mask that is worn over your face at night. Pressurized air is forced down your throat through the mask to keep your airway open. Many users and bed partners find the mask uncomfortable and the pump too loud to fall or stay asleep. This can lead to decreased compliance and an increase in the health risks associated with Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
Dental Sleep Medicine doctors have created a proven alternative to maintain the opening of the airway during sleep without the hassle of the CPAP machine. Oral Appliance Therapy is more comfortable, more discrete, and quieter than traditional CPAP therapy. Oral Appliances are small, effective, non-restrictive and can decrease your health issues related to obstructive sleep apnea. SLEEP, DREAM, Thrive!