Sleep ApneaAn Overview
Do you or your partner snore or wake repeatedly gasping for air at night?
This could be the sign of an undiagnosed sleep disorder that can threaten your overall health and well-being over time. There is a range of sleep disorders, all of which can leave you feeling tired and diminish your performance on a daily basis, but sleep apnea can also have a detrimental impact on your health. Sleep apnea and its more common form, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can raise your risk of developing cardiovascular and systemic related disease or of experiencing a sudden heart attack or stroke. If you snore or experience any of the signs of sleep apnea, prompt diagnosis and treatment are important for restoring your health and reducing associated risks.
Dr. Sousa offers treatment for patients diagnosed with sleep apnea and OSA using an oral sleep appliance, sometimes called a snore guard. He works with patients on an individual basis to manage mild to moderate sleep apnea and can coordinate a diagnosis for patients with oral health signs and common symptoms, working with their general practitioner.
Common Signs of Sleep Apnea
It is important to recognize the common signs of OSA and discuss your concerns when visiting with us. These can include:
- Feeling sleepy, groggy during the day, even after a “good night’s sleep”
- Snoring loudly, waking suddenly during the night gasping for air
- Dry mouth in the morning
- Feeling irritable, moodiness
- Difficulty concentrating
Am I At Risk for Sleep Apnea?
Anyone is at risk for developing sleep apnea or a sleep disorder, but there are certain key factors that can greatly increase your risk.
- Being a male
- Being overweight, obese
- Having a large neck circumference
- Being diabetic
- Diagnosed with hypertension
- Tobacco use, smoker
OSA is also more commonly diagnosed in older adults. If you are concerned that you may be at risk for sleep apnea, discuss this with Dr. Sousa. He can look for common oral signs and risk factors during an exam.