Don’t Ignore Your Sleep Apnea
The most common symptoms of sleep apnea include daytime drowsiness, irritability, and heavy nighttime snoring that’s often punctuated by loud gasping noises. It’s important to learn the symptoms of sleep apnea and receive a diagnosis. By seeking an accurate diagnosis, you can start receiving effective treatment to alleviate your sleep apnea symptoms and protect your health.
Sleep Apnea Risk Factors
If sleep apnea is left untreated, the oxygen levels that your brain and organs receive will slowly diminish. This can cause a series of underlying conditions and illnesses. Several health problems associated with sleep apnea include:
- Weight gain
- Type 2 diabetes
- Heart failure
- Liver problems
- High blood pressure
Sleep Apnea & Weight Gain
Sleep apnea causes the patient’s metabolism to slow down, making it difficult to lose weight. Sleep apnea also triggers your body to release a hormone called ghrelin. Ghrelin makes you crave foods that are high in carbohydrates.
This double whammy effect makes it really difficult for people with sleep apnea to avoid weight gain. When you’re overweight, it puts you at greater risk for additional health concerns including:
- Heart disease
Stroke & Heart Disease
Studies have shown that sleep apnea is associated with an increased risk of stroke. Over time, sleep apnea causes persistently low blood oxygen levels. Your body responds by releasing surges of stress hormones which increase your blood pressure and cause fluctuations in your heart rate (arrhythmia). This can lead to stroke and heart disease.
Diagnosing Sleep Disorders
Here at our Greensboro, NC office, your health is important to us. If a patient is suffering or believed to be suffering from sleep apnea, we recommend taking a sleep study. We’ll provide you with options to choose from.
You can either take your sleep study at a laboratory monitored by sleep specialists or do a home sleep study. The study will monitor your brain activity, heart rate, breathing patterns, and blood oxygen levels. Once we’ve received a diagnosis, we’ll recommend treatment based on the severity of your diagnosis.
Once you receive your diagnosis, it’s crucial to seek effective treatment. Dr. Katz offers custom oral appliances to treat your sleep apnea symptoms. Oral appliances are a great alternative to CPAP as they’re portable, small, and noise-free. The appliances help comfortably move the jaw forward to allow oxygen to flow through the throat without obstructions. The discreet design of oral appliances also helps you sleep in comfortable positions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it dangerous to leave sleep apnea untreated?
- Heart disease
- Liver problems
In the worst-case scenarios, some of these illnesses can be fatal. That’s why it’s crucial to receive professional help from an experienced sleep dentist like Dr. Katz. During your consultation with Dr. Katz, he’ll evaluate your symptoms and develop a treatment plan that fits your needs.
How can I reduce my risk of sleep apnea?
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Use a humidifier to open your airways
- Exercise regularly (yoga promotes oxygen flow)
- Do positional therapy (sleep position changes)
- Avoid alcohol consumption & smoking, especially before bedtime
Treat Your Sleep Apnea Symptoms Now
Don’t deal with unrestful nights any longer. Reliable treatment solutions are available to put your sleep apnea symptoms to bed. You don’t have to live with an increased risk of health complications stemming from untreated sleep apnea. Call our Greensboro, NC office at (336) 346-8988 to schedule your consultation with Dr. Katz. You can also fill out the contact form below and one of our staff will get back to you promptly.