Your Guide to Sleep Apnea
What is Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea, also known as OSA, is a common disorder that interferes with your ability to breathe during sleep. This occurs when your throat muscles relax and cause your tongue to fall back into the airway. This creates a blockage, causing you to repeatedly wake up throughout the night.
The brain quickly recognizes a lack of oxygen and signals your body to wake up and gasp for air. These episodes can happen up to several hundred times a night, but many patients have no memory of them the next morning.
Health Risks of Sleep Apnea
If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to serious health complications. Some of these include:
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular disease
- Heart attacks
- Lack of oxygen to the brain
- Type 2 diabetes
- Change in metabolism
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Loud and frequent snoring is one of the most common signs of sleep apnea. However, not everyone who snores suffers from a sleep disorder. Additional symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Frequently gasping for air at night
- Waking up with a sore or dry throat
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Mood changes, like depression or irritability
- Lack of energy and motivation
- Morning headaches
- Difficulty concentrating
- Frequent urination at night
- Reduced libido
- Nighttime sweating
- Recent weight gain
If you’ve noticed any of these symptoms, you may be suffering from sleep apnea. Taking a sleep study is the only way to get a proper diagnosis and receive the care you need. These tests can be administered overnight at a sleep clinic or in the comfort of your own home.
Sleep Apnea Treatments
Once you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea, Dr. Grivas will create a treatment plan tailored to your unique situation, and design a custom Vivos biomimetic medical device specifically for you. These customized oral appliances will work to correct the issues that are causing your sleep apnea. In just 12 to 24 months, your oral appliance can drastically reduce or eliminate your sleep apnea symptoms.
Treating the Underlying Problem
The Vivos System is highly effective and doesn’t just address sleep apnea symptoms. Instead, Vivos focuses on the reasons behind your symptoms. Vivos oral appliances will gently reposition your jaw, allowing for better breathing during sleep.
Some of the top reasons that patients choose Vivos as their sleep apnea solution include:
- No extra medications
- No CPAP machine required
- Comfortable, removable, and discreet
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens if I ignore my sleep apnea?
Ignoring your sleep apnea can severely impact your physical and mental health. If left alone, you can develop serious health complications including hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, anxiety, depression, and more. That’s why it’s important to receive a proper diagnosis from a sleep lab in order for your sleep dentist to tailor your sleep apnea treatment to your needs.
Can I treat my sleep apnea by changing my lifestyle?
While certain lifestyle changes can improve your sleep apnea symptoms, you shouldn’t substitute them for professional treatment. When combined with oral appliance therapy, making lifestyle changes such as incorporating exercise can help you get the quality rest you deserve. Your sleep specialist will be able to recommend certain changes to your day-to-day lifestyle based on your symptoms, treatment plan, and overall health.
How will I know if I’m eligible for oral appliance therapy?
The best way to know whether you’re eligible for oral appliance therapy is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Grivas. At Sac Sleep & Breathing, we provide the Vivos System in order to customize our mouthguards to relieve patients with mild and moderate sleep apnea symptoms. This process works by shifting your jaw into the optimal position while you sleep so that your breathing won’t be interrupted.
Can anxiety make my sleep apnea even worse?
Certain stress-related disorders can cause a person to develop or experience worsening sleep apnea patterns. Additionally, having your sleep constantly interrupted can complicate issues like memory performance, headaches, feeling fatigued, and lack of motivation. If you are struggling with persistent nightmares, stress, or other issues, it’s important to seek treatment.
Schedule Your Sleep Apnea Consultation
At Sac Sleep & Breathing, Dr. Grivas and our team will do everything to create a solution that meets your needs. Give our Sacramento, CA practice a call at (916) 735-4060 or fill out our helpful contact form to schedule your consultation with our sleep specialist. We also treat patients who reside in Sierra Oaks, Woodside Condo, and Campus Commons, CA.