Snoring is more than a nuisance to the person you’re sharing your bed with. It is often an indication of a sleep disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Sleep apnea affects over 20 million Americans, and many don’t know they have it. Dr. Richard Van Gurp of Carolina Sleep Solutions wants you to understand why you shouldn’t ignore snoring and the risks associated with sleep apnea.
Is Snoring A Sign of Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when your breathing is randomly and frequently interrupted when you’re sleeping. This is due to the muscles in the back of the throat relaxing and not keeping the airway open. Oftentimes, you might not even wake up when it happens. This can sometimes make it hard for you to even know you have it.
Many people snore at night. Although it is not always an indication of sleep apnea, people who snore and experience other symptoms may want to see a sleep specialist. Here are some other sleep disorder symptoms that often coincide with snoring:
- Waking up gasping for air in the middle of the night
- Feeling unusually tired throughout the day
- Problems with memory and concentration
- Waking up tired or unrefreshed after sleep
Is Sleep Apnea A Health Problem?
Untreated sleep apnea leads to a much higher risk of things like strokes and cancer. Not getting treatment for this condition can lead to earlier death from one of these medical problems or just a host of medical issues down the road, such as:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Early death
Certain medications, such as sedatives, and general anesthesia can make your sleep apnea symptoms even worse. If you undergo a procedure and don’t tell your doctor ahead of time, they won’t take preventative measures for your sleep apnea before anesthesia. This can be extremely dangerous, as your muscles can relax even more, which causes more breathing interruptions.
Snoring and Sleep Apnea Treatment in Charlotte, NC
There are a variety of different sleep apnea treatments available. At Carolina Sleep Solutions, Dr. Van Gurp will perform a thorough examination and patient history with you to determine the best option. We offer mandibular advancement devices, tongue retaining devices, and sometimes even recommend a CPAP combined with dental sleep device therapy. Schedule your free screening now to learn more about how you can stop snoring and get better sleep.