Sleep Apnea & Snoring

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Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that is characterized by periods of interrupted breathing during sleep. These interruptions, known as apneic episodes, can last for a few seconds to a few minutes and can occur multiple times throughout the night. Sleep apnea can be a serious condition that can lead to a number of health problems if left untreated.

There are two main types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and central sleep apnea (CSA). Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common form and is caused by a blockage of the airway, usually due to the relaxation of the muscles in the throat. Central sleep apnea is less common and is caused by the brain not sending the proper signals to the muscles that control breathing.

Symptoms of sleep apnea may include loud snoring, frequent waking during the night, difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, and excessive daytime sleepiness. Sleep apnea can also cause a number of other health problems, including high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

Treatment for sleep apnea typically begins with a thorough evaluation by a dentist along with a primary care physician. This may include a sleep study, which is a test that is conducted in a sleep laboratory to monitor your sleep patterns and determine the severity of your sleep apnea. Based on the results of this evaluation, the sleep specialist will recommend a treatment plan to address your specific needs.

Treatment options for sleep apnea may include lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, quitting smoking, and reducing alcohol consumption, as well as the use of devices such as continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines or oral appliances. Surgery may also be recommended in certain cases.

If you are experiencing symptoms of sleep apnea, it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible. Sleep apnea can have serious consequences if left untreated, so don't wait to get the care you need.

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