You don’t have time. Your snoring isn’t that bad. It’s okay if you don’t get good sleep. The excuses for not getting sleep apnea treatment could go on and on. If you consistently snore and wake up still feeling tired after a full night’s rest, you may brush it off as no big deal and try to live with it. But doing so can lead to more than just daytime drowsiness. You could suffer other serious, ill effects to your health and safety. Seeking treatment helps you get restful sleep and prevent potential negative health risks. Keep reading this post to learn more about just a few examples of the dangers of untreated sleep apnea in Frisco and how to get relief.
High Blood Pressure and Heart Disease
When your breathing stops during sleep, your brain produces a stress hormone to wake you up enough to resume breathing. That hormone also triggers a spike in your blood pressure. Over time, these spikes can start to become the norm, even while you’re awake. High blood pressure is a major contributor to heart disease, which causes one in every four deaths in the United States. Ignoring your sleep apnea could lead to significant, long-term effects on your heart health and the longevity of your life.
Complications in Pregnancy
Research has shown that sleep apnea leads to serious health risks for both the mother and the baby. Pregnant women with sleep apnea are more likely to develop preeclampsia, high blood pressure during pregnancy that often causes preterm birth, and to deliver their babies via cesarean section. Their babies are more likely to spend time in the neonatal intensive care unit than babies born to babies without sleep apnea.
Studies have shown that people who get quality sleep frequently weigh less than those who don’t. That’s because sleep deprivation causes the hormones that signal hunger to become distorted. Also, when you already feel fatigued, you’re less likely to exercise on a regular basis.
Did you know that driving while drowsy can be just as dangerous as driving while intoxicated? It’s not safe to drive or operate machinery with sleep deprivation. You could be putting yourself and those around you at higher risk of an accident.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
The good news is that sleep apnea is a treatable condition. By turning to an expert in sleep apnea treatment, you can finally get the rest you desperately need. Many times a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine provides relief from symptoms. However, others find the CPAP machine more disruptive than sleep apnea. In these cases, a simple, customized oral appliance can help open up your airways at night by repositioning the lower jaw.
No matter the reason for not seeking treatment, your overall well-being and safety are worth the time and effort to address your sleep apnea. Not only will your partner thank you, but you’ll also be able to enjoy better rest and health in the long run. If you have or think you have sleep apnea, don’t wait to see a sleep specialist in your area as soon as possible.
About the Author
Dr. Kent Smith is a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine and the American Sleep and Breathing Academy. He also serves as president of the American Sleep and Breathing Academy. In 2012, he was the first in Texas to be awarded a Dental Sleep Medicine Facility Accreditation. To schedule an appointment with him, you can call (844) 409-4657 or click here.