At Ritchie Dental Group, we often see patients who say they have been struggling with insufficient sleep for months or even years. Some of these men and women end up being diagnosed with sleep apnea or related conditions.
You Can’t Just “Tough It Out”
The reluctance to obtain professional help is unfortunate because it takes such a high toll on their health and reduces their quality of life. If they are keeping someone up at night, it makes life harder for that person, as well.
Protect Your Health
For some inexplicable reason, many men and women don’t consider sleep apnea a pressing issue. Why the disconnect? We are talking about breathing, folks! There isn’t a biological function more fundamental than that. And substandard sleep can cause a plethora of serious health issues. It also impacts performance in every area of life; work, recreation, and social activities.
Sleep apnea is a syndrome where you have frequent, recurring pauses in breathing while you sleep. These delays can last for up to 60 seconds and are caused by soft tissue in the back of the throat that relaxes and closes the airway. As you can probably imagine, when our brain is not getting enough oxygen it interferes with vital biological processes.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Cause: Throat muscles soften and cover the airway. This is the most prevalent type.
Central Sleep Apnea
Cause: The brain doesn’t send signals to the muscles that regulate breathing.
Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome (Treatment-emergent Central Sleep Apnea)
Both of the previous conditions are present in this type. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/sleep-apnea/symptoms-causes/syc-20377631
Signs of Sleep Apnea
- Loud snoring
- Sudden awakenings where you are choking or feel “out of breath”
- Pauses in breathing while sleeping (as evidenced by another person observing the behavior)
- Sore throat or dry mouth after sleeping
- Fitful sleep
- Falling asleep while performing normal daily activities
- Inability to concentrate during the day
- Depression and irritability
- Awakening with a headache
- Extreme tiredness
If you experience any of these symptoms, we invite you to discuss it with Drs. Ritchie. Call 830-693-8833 to schedule a sleep apnea consultation.