Snoring is an incredibly common problem for adults. According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, approximately 90 million Americans are snoring while they are sleeping. Almost half of those people snoring are considered to be just ‘simple snorers’ while the other half suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Knowing the difference between simple snoring and obstructive sleep apnea can mean that you can get the correct treatment. Understanding the differences between the two can help you identify which one is keeping you or your partner up at night.
Simple snoring may come and go. It may not be a chronic problem that you face every night. Snoring infrequently can be caused by a specific trigger. Sinus infections, colds, seasonal allergies, excessive alcohol consumption, or smoking can all trigger the occasional snoring. People who are overweight tend to snore regularly due to the excess soft tissues that can vibrate while they sleep. However, being overweight can also lead to having OSA.
The biggest difference between sleep apnea and simple snoring is frequent gasps for breath mark OSA. Obstructive sleep apnea causes the soft tissues of your throat and mouth to collapse into your airway. This causes a blockage to the flow of oxygen to your bloodstream, which can cause you to gasp for air. Your body believes you to be suffocating, so it will try to get you to gasp for oxygen. Since you are unlikely to notice these gasps for air while you are sleeping, you may want to participate in a sleep study to fully diagnose if you have obstructive sleep apnea.
Your body suffocating multiple times while you are sleeping not only impacts the amount of restful sleep that you get, but it also puts your body through a lot of stress. Those suffering from OSA can be at higher risk for stroke, heart disease, diabetes, and more. Your dentist can help treat your sleep apnea to lower these risks and to help you get more restful nights of sleep.
Dr. Carmona can help you treat obstructive sleep apnea. To schedule a consultation with Austin Prosthodontics in Austin, TX, call 512-250-9444. We also proudly welcome patients from Cedar Park, Round Rock, Pflugerville, Leander, and all surrounding Texas communities.