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What Are the Dangers of Untreated Sleep Apnea?

September 16, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — sleepdallasnew @ 8:31 pm
woman sleeping with sleep apnea

Sleep apnea is a condition that affects millions of Americans, keeping them from the good night’s rest they deserve. It occurs when the airway becomes obstructed by relaxed throat muscles or the tongue, leading to difficulty breathing while asleep. This interrupted breathing causes those affected to awaken throughout the night—usually without even realizing it. Unfortunately, poor sleep is just the beginning of the problems that sleep apnea can cause. Read on to learn why this issue can be detrimental to your health and day to day life.

How Do You Know if You Have Sleep Apnea?

It’s estimated that around 80% of sleep apnea cases are left untreated because it occurs during the night so it can be difficult to notice. However, you and your sleeping partner should be aware of these common warning signs:

  • Loud snoring
  • Waking up gasping for breath
  • Morning headaches
  • Waking up with a bad taste in the mouth
  • Difficulty focusing during the day
  • Irritability
  • Lack of sex drive

How Does Sleep Apnea Affect Your Body?

There are various complications that can occur from untreated sleep apnea, including:

Heart Problems

Sleep apnea causes sudden drops in oxygen levels, which increases blood pressure and strains the cardiovascular system. This condition also may increase your risk of recurrent heart attack, abnormal heartbeats, and strokes. Plus, if you already have heart disease, low blood oxygen levels can even lead to sudden death due to irregular heartbeats.

Daytime Fatigue

The interruptions that sleep apnea cause through your sleep make it impossible to get the rest you need to feel relaxed and recharged for the next day. This can cause numerous issues, including depression and trouble performing at school or work.

Additionally, daytime fatigue can be potentially life-threatening for you and anyone in your car—accidents are more likely when drowsy behind the wheel. Untreated sleep apnea can also be dangerous when it comes to operating heavy machinery.

Sleep Deprived Partners

As if the effects sleep apnea can have on you isn’t enough, you must keep in mind that your condition may impact the quality of sleep that your family is getting. Loud snoring or constantly getting up throughout the night can impact your partner’s ability to sleep. Plus, your children may be awakened by the noises that can occur while you try to count sheep.

Thankfully, these problems can be avoided as long as you can recognize you’re not getting enough sleep! If you think you have sleep apnea, contact an expert sleep dentist in Dallas to take back control of your night’s rest.

About the Practice

At Sleep Dallas, Dr. Kent Smith and Dr. Marie Nguyen work together to offer a variety of treatment options to help patients get the rest they need. From custom-made oral appliances to CBD oil for sleep, they’re ready to make counting sheep easy. If you have any questions, they can be reached through their website or by phone at either of their Irving or Frisco locations.

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