Sleep apnea is a little known condition that doesn’t seem hazardous to healthy living, with little to no symptoms other than snoring. However, it is an insidious condition that blocks the airway just enough for the individual to stop breathing for a few moments in their sleep. Although the body has a reflex mechanism to cough or gag in order to get breathing to continue, if you happen to stop breathing for 10 seconds every 2 minutes over the course of the evening, you will reduce your oxygen intake over 30-40% over the course of the sleep cycle. This leads to morning heaviness, fatigue throughout the work day, and decreased over-all production in normal work activities or child rearing. This condition is especially evident in patients who are overweight or have been diagnosed with medical conditions such as diabetes. Untreated sleep apnea in Mission Viejo, California, can contribute to several serious health conditions including heart disease and high blood pressure. If you have any of the symptoms below and your regular physician is scratching his head as to why you are feeling the way you do, you owe it to yourself to ask your dentist to see if sleep apnea is affecting your life.
- Extreme drowsiness throughout the day
- Personality changes and irritability
- Difficulty sleeping
- Waking up with dry or sore throat
- Morning headaches