If you find yourself feeling tired throughout the day, or if you snore heavily at night, you may be suffering from sleep apnea. Dr. Crowell can diagnose and help treat this common sleep disorder.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep. These pauses are called apneas, and they can be the result of a physical blockage, a lack of respiratory effort, or a combination of the two.
Snoring & Sleep Apnea
When you fall into deep sleep, your tongue, soft palate and throat tissues all relax.
The relaxation of these throat tissues causes the airways to restrict, vibrating and rumbling them as oxygen is forced past. This is commonly known as snoring. People with narrower airways tend to snore more heavily, since more force is required to breathe.
In people with sleep apnea, the tongue, soft palate and throat tissues over-relax. This causes them to collapse into the back of the throat and obstruct your airway. When the oxygen flow is thus restricted, the brain is forced to awaken in order to resume breathing consciously.
These episodes can occur hundreds of times each night, preventing you from falling into the deep, restorative sleep needed to recharge your brain and body. This can contribute to many medical disorders, which can reduce the quality and longevity of your life.
Signs & Symptoms
The following symptoms, may be a sign that you have sleep apnea:
- Trouble focusing
- Heavy snoring
- Headaches and migraines
- Restless sleep
- TMJ/TMD symptoms
Once you have you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, Dr. Crowell can help you achieve a better night’s sleep with VIVOS™ oral appliances and lifestyle solutions.