Sleep Apnea Complications Explained for Weatherford
Snoring may be more than just a loud, disturbing noise. Accompanied by fitful starts, gasping for breath and repeated night time awakenings, snoring may really be a serious health condition called sleep apnea.
Dr. Deborah A. Romack at Weatherford Dental Sleep Medicine is an expert in OSA or Obstructive Sleep Apnea. As a skilled member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, she treats sleep apnea with CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure), customized oral appliances or both.
How Sleep Apnea Affects Overall Health
Treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea helps avoid deleterious, long-term effects. OSA or Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the most common kind of sleep apnea, affecting millions of American adults. It occurs when the soft tissues at the back of the throat relax and collapse during night time sleep or even day time naps, obstructing airflow.
Poor airflow causes brain oxygen levels to drop drastically, signaling the brain to wake the patient up. Research indicates that people wake up 30 to hundreds of times per night. Disrupted sleep is just part of the problem. Dr. Romack tells her patients that systemic health also suffers in more complex and serious ways.
The National Sleep Foundation, an organization of experts in sleep science, says that when lack of sleep and oxygen deprivation combine in sleep apnea, systemic health complications abound.
For instance, OSA patients often experience cardiac conditions such as congestive heart failure (CHF) and a cardiac arrhythmia called atrial fibrillation in which the upper chambers of the heart flutter instead of pumping forcefully. These individuals also have an increased incidence of heart attack and stroke.
Additionally, liver function decreases, as measured with blood tests, and some people develop adult-onset diabetes mellitus. Metabolic syndrome, characterized by hypertension, hyperlipidemia, increased blood glucose and thick waist circumference, plagues sleep apnea sufferers.
Besides suffering metabolic and cardiac dysfunction, OSA patients experience:
- daytime exhaustion
- attention deficits
- memory issues
- mood swings
- sexual dysfunction
- complications during surgeries
Treatments for Sleep Apnea
Dr. Deborah Romack and her professional staff at Weatherford Dental Sleep Medicine provide the screening and treatment plans to get to the heart of sleep apnea problems. They feature several durable and comfortable oral appliances which aid patients in getting a restful, peaceful and best of all, healthy night’s rest. Oral appliances typically cost less than CPAP treatment, plus they are portable for easy use when travelling.
Depending on the how an individual’s sleep apnea expresses itself, Dr. Romack may prescribe a combination of an oral appliance and a CPAP machine. When these 2 strategies pair together, the oral appliance allows the patient to use the CPAP machine less or at a lower, quieter setting.
Safeguard Your Health
You and your loved ones know how bad your snoring is. Act on it and stay healthy by consulting Dr. Romack at Weatherford Dental Sleep Medicine. Contact the office staff for an appointment.