Do you struggle with interrupted sleep or snoring? Both are signs of a more significant problem known as sleep apnea. The sleep disorder is a commonly misdiagnosed condition that causes patients to stop breathing during sleep. This can lead to several symptoms that can impact your health and your quality of life. Thankfully, you can get the rest you need and breathe easier with the help of Dr. Jerry Janzen. He offers the solutions you need to treat sleep apnea in Prince Albert.
Snoring occurs when the airway narrows, causing the soft tissues to vibrate when air passes through it. Snoring is often a common sign of sleep apnea, which typically results from an obstruction in the airway. Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the soft tissues in the throat or back of the mouth collapse to block the airways. This causes you to stop breathing frequently throughout the night with each event lasting potentially longer than one minute. Although it can develop in anyone, there are several risk factors that increase the likeliness for it developing, such as a large neck circumference, obesity, and large tonsils.
The frequent pauses in breathing can lead to a variety of symptoms, like loud, chronic snoring. You may wake often choking or gasping for air. It is common to wake with a headache or sore throat. If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to daytime drowsiness, difficulty concentrating, and moodiness. Over time, this can lead to sleep deprivation, which increases your risk of accidents at home, in the workplace, or behind the wheel.
The lack of adequate oxygen flow also places a strain on your heart. This increases your risk of several health problems, including high blood pressure, heart attack, and premature death.
Traditionally, sleep apnea is treated using a CPAP machine. This delivers a steady stream of air through a mask worn over the mouth or nose. Although it is effective, it can be bothersome. As an alternative, many patients now prefer an oral appliance. It is a custom-fit device that looks like a mouthguard; however, it repositions the lower jaw and tongue forward to prevent the airway from collapsing. As a result, you can breathe easy and enjoy a better night’s rest.
If you suspect you have sleep apnea or you were recently diagnosed with it, it is normal to have several questions. We want you to feel confident in the decisions you make for your health and your quality of life. During your appointment, we take the time to answer your questions about sleep apnea, such as:
Everyone snores from time to time, so it does not always indicate sleep apnea; however, it is a common sign of the condition. If you snore excessively, it is best to undergo a sleep study to ensure there is not a larger issue causing the problem.
When used correctly, an oral appliance is effective for treating mild to moderate cases of sleep apnea. Depending on the severity of your condition, you may need a combined treatment using an oral appliance and a CPAP.
If you know you are struggling with sleep apnea, or you have chronic snoring in Prince Albert, contact our office today for treatment.
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