It’s easy to see snoring as little more than an inconvenience, or at worst an embarrassing habit. But snoring can hurt more than your sleep, and it can’t simply be solved with earplugs. In fact, snoring can impact how rested you feel, causing daytime drowsiness, and is even a hallmark symptom of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a dangerous condition that can take years off your life and increase your risk of deadly diseases like heart failure or stroke.
Did you know that your dentist can treat snoring? Dr. Pamela Marzban can find the best treatment to ensure your sleep is restful and you don’t keep your partner awake all night! If you suffer from sleep apnea, she can provide relief for that, too. If you’re looking for snoring treatment in Burke, VA, call 703-323-8200 or contact us online to make an appointment.
How Snoring Affects Your Life
Anyone who has ever shared a bed with a person who snores can attest to how frustrating it can be. Snoring can create tension in a relationship, causing resentment when it prevents a partner from sleeping well, or even driving couples to sleep apart.
But snoring affects the snorer as well — it’s actually a sign that the sleeper is not getting enough air. People who struggle to get enough oxygen while they sleep often have decreased oxygen levels in their blood even during the daytime. Snorers also experience more daytime fatigue, feel less rested upon waking, and are significantly more likely to fall asleep during sedentary activities like watching television or even driving.
Snoring and Sleep Apnea
Most dangerous of all, snoring is tied to sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder where the sleeper periodically stops breathing, sometimes as frequently as hundreds of times in a single night. Sleep apnea disrupts normal sleep patterns, and can even cause the sleeper to wake completely when breathing starts again, fully interrupting their sleep.
People with sleep apnea will frequently make a choking or gurgling noise, much like a snore, when they start breathing again after an episode. Some estimates suggest that tens of millions of Americans snore, and approximately half of those who snore suffer from sleep apnea. Even more terrifying is the fact that an estimated 80% of people with sleep apnea are undiagnosed — and as a result, untreated.
Sleep apnea commonly results in increased daytime sleepiness, headaches, decreased focus and memory, dry mouth, and sore throat. But while these symptoms are inconvenient, it’s the related health risks that truly make sleep apnea dangerous: People with untreated sleep apnea are at increased risk of hypertension, coronary artery disease, stroke, and heart attack.
Sleep apnea treatment can decrease these risks, but most people never receive the treatment they need due to not recognizing the symptoms.
Snoring comes as a result of the airway being partially or fully obstructed. This can happen due to a naturally narrow airway, or if any of the soft tissues involved in breathing (soft palate, uvula, tongue, tonsils, and even simply the tissues of the throat) obstruct the airway. Once the source has been identified, snoring treatments can address these issues specifically.
An oral appliance such as the MicrO2, (similar to a mouthguard) can reposition the jaw during sleep to keep the airway open.
To determine the source of your snoring, Dr. Marzban is the only dentist in the Burke, VA area offering a revolutionary new home-use device called the WatchPAT™. This ambulatory device can perform sleep testing in the comfort of your own home, allowing the creation of a targeted, personalized treatment plan based on your specific needs.