What is Sleep Apnea?
During sleep, the muscles in the throat, jaw, and mouth naturally relax. When a patient is suffering from sleep apnea, these muscles become a little too relaxed and as a result, the airway is constricted and breathing becomes difficult. Most people have no idea this is occurring, even though breathing is commonly stopped for 10 seconds or longer. Excess weight around the neck also compresses the airway and disrupts normal breathing and sleep cycles. This decreased flow of oxygen usually results in very short, repeated awakenings that occur throughout the night dozens or even hundreds of times which results in a poor quality of sleep.
Beyond the restless nights and incessant snoring, the effects of obstructive sleep apnea can cause quite a few serious health risks. Studies have linked sleep apnea to high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, cardiovascular disease, and an increased risk of stroke. Recognizing the symptoms of sleep apnea and seeking treatment as soon as possible is very important. Unfortunately, many people who suffer the effects of sleep apnea go undiagnosed or do not get help. Dental Solutions of Avon is seeking to change this for the people in our community.