April 3, 2019

Adequate sleep is essential for good mental and physical health, but what if you have a condition that keeps you from getting the rest you need each night? Sleep apnea is a very real and very common condition that affects more than 100 million people worldwide. Here’s what you should know about the sleep disorder and how to tell if you have it.

Understanding Sleep Apnea

Like other sleep disorders, sleep apnea prevents quality, restful slumber. The condition can be divided into two main types: obstructive and central. In the obstructive type, the airway gets blocked during sleep (usually by the throat’s own soft tissue) and prevents the proper flow of oxygen. The central type is caused by the brain failing to properly signal the body to breathe during slumber. Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type and is the most easily treated. Your dentist in Nashville, TN, can help you understand if your sleep issues are due to obstruction or problems with the respiratory control center in your brain.

Common Symptoms 

Do you have trouble sleeping at night, despite getting to bed at a reasonable time? Or maybe it feels like you’re getting the recommended number of sleep hours at night but you wake up feeling groggy and exhausted. In addition to chronic sleepiness, here are a few more indications you may have sleep apnea:

  • Snoring
  • Headaches when you first wake up
  • Forgetfulness and “brain fog”
  • Waking up frequently with a dry or sore throat
  • Lack of daytime energy
  • Falling asleep while driving
  • Gasping or choking while asleep

Failing to receive treatment for your symptoms could eventually lead to dangerous physical problems. Studies have shown a link between untreated sleep disorders and high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and weight gain.

Schedule Your Treatment 

Dr. James Pace offers snore guards and CPAP machine treatments to help those with obstructive sleep apnea obtain quality, restorative rest at night. To schedule your appointment with the compassionate dentist in Nashville, TN, call Belle Meade Family Dentistry today.



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