Many people suffer from sleep deprivation. In fact, as many as 50 – 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder that significantly impacts their lives. One such disorder is sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is when you experience interruptions in breathing throughout the night. These interruptions can last 8 seconds or longer, depending on the severity of the disorder. They can happen hundreds of times per night, preventing your body from getting the oxygen and sleep it needs to function in the following days.
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that plagues millions of people worldwide, with many cases going undiagnosed and untreated. When you have sleep apnea, you experience pauses in breathing while you sleep. These pauses can last anywhere from 10 seconds, a minute, or even longer before your brain panics and awakens you so you can resume breathing. You may not always notice these awakenings, but they can happen hundreds of times during the night for those who suffer from sleep apnea. Your lack of sleep and interruptions in your sleep cycle results in consequences like daytime sleepiness, morning headaches, and snoring. While you think you may be able to deal with those, there are other, more dangerous effects of untreated sleep apnea, too, like increased risk of stroke, diabetes, and heart disease.
Between balancing work, family life, and your social life, it can be hard to find time to go to the doctor to address your sleep apnea. And yet, when you aren’t sleeping well, it can be even harder to balance all those different aspects of life. When we sleep, our brain and body work on restoring themselves so we’re ready for the next day. And if that can’t happen, how can we expect ourselves to manage that balancing act?
Do you think you might have sleep apnea? A great way to diagnose this condition is with a home sleep study. Don’t worry–you can have a sleep test sent directly to you and take it in the comfort of your own bed. Then, if your results indicate that it’s appropriate, we can connect you with a local dentist from our network that can fit you with a custom oral appliance for easy treatment.
For many dentists and doctors, the biggest obstacle to treating their patients’ obstructive sleep apnea is getting a sleep test. Patients must visit a separate office for a consultation before getting a sleep test. A sleep physician may also recommend a test at a sleep lab, which may be unnecessary and can lead patients to put off getting a test.