Who is at risk of sleep apnea?

While certain factors can contribute to a patient’s risk of developing sleeping disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea, including being overweight or physically inactive, there are times when this condition can affect even the young and healthy. Anyone can develop obstructive sleep apnea during their lifetime, regardless of their current medical health.

What is obstructive sleep apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that causes patients to be unable to breathe through their airways due to a blockage. It can result in the patient awakening hundreds of times a night, unable to reach the deeper levels of sleep needed for one to feel well-rested each day. Due to this, many patients who have the condition may experience a variety of symptoms, which include:

  • Chronic headaches and migraines
  • Daytime fatigue or insomnia
  • Dry throat upon wakening
  • Gasping during sleep
  • Chronic snoring
  • Poor memory and concentration
  • Increased depression or anxiety

Getting a definitive diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea is the first step in finding out more about the condition. Many patients have a sleep study arranged through their primary care physician, during which their sleep patterns are evaluated by a medical professional. Once a diagnosis has been made, most patients are advised to use a CPAP machine while they sleep for treatment.

The CPAP machine is a device that uses a mask that is worn on the face. It maintains open airways while a patient sleeps, allowing them to address the common problems associated with obstructive sleep apnea. However, many patients are noncompliant with treatment because they find the machine to be uncomfortable and difficult to travel with. This is when a dentist may recommend the use of an oral appliance as an alternative treatment.

Schedule an evaluation with Dr. Lindsey F. Marshall today!

Ardmore, PA patients who are concerned about obstructive sleep apnea or other conditions that can impact both their oral health and their overall health are welcome to work with our professionals to get a definitive diagnosis and discuss possible solutions. Call her facility at (610) 649-0696 to request a consultation visit at 32 Parking Plaza, Suite 800 in Suburban Square.

Posted in: Sleep Apnea

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