Spotting, and seeking treatment for, sleep apnea early can make a huge difference in your oral health and quality of life. The negative effects of sleep apnea can compound over time, so the sooner you can halt this progress, the better.
With that in mind, our Saint Louis sleep apnea dentists have compiled this short overview of sleep apnea symptoms. If you notice any of these health issues in your own life, it’s time to reach out to your dental team for assistance.
First of all, pay attention to how you’re feeling throughout the day. Because sleep apnea negatively impacts the patient’s quality of sleep, sufferers will often experience undesirable side effects during the day. You may find that you are chronically fatigued, or that you start to have memory or concentration problems. Sleep apnea sufferers may also deal with headaches, especially upon waking and before falling asleep.
There are also some red flags to look out for at night. If you find that you’re frequently waking during the night, for example, this may be due to low blood oxygen levels caused by sleep apnea. Pay special attention to sleep disruptions if you find that you’re coughing, choking, or gasping for air at these times. If you sleep in the same room as someone else, talk to them about whether you’re snoring loudly at night, as this a clear indication that your body is struggling to pass oxygen through your airway.
The good news is that once you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea, there are a number of effective treatment options available to you. The traditional treatment for sleep apnea is the CPAP machine. In order to use a CPAP, the patient wears a mask over his or her mouth—this mask delivers a concentrated flow of oxygen to the patient, with enough force to bypass the obstruction. Unfortunately, many people find it difficult to live use a CPAP every night; these machines are somewhat cumbersome and uncomfortable. That is why our Saint Louis sleep apnea dentists offer sleep apnea mouthpieces as alternatives. These oral appliances are designed to move the patient’s mouth and lower jaw into a better position during the night, helping to keep the airway open.
If you have questions about sleep apnea in general, or the treatments available to deal with this condition, our Saint Louis sleep apnea dentists are here to help you. Just give us a call to speak to a member of our team!