Sleep apnea is a disorder impacting thousands of people throughout Virginia. In some cases, sleep apnea results in little more than snoring and occasional restlessness, but more often it causes serious and potentially fatal complications. Treatment for sleep apnea is very effective. But it is hard to treat sleep apnea because as much as 80% of sufferers don’t know they have it. That’s why it’s so important to know the symptoms. If you have been told you snore or if you suspect you have sleep apnea, discussing your options with Fairfax apnea dentist Dr. Pamela Marzban could very well save your life.
Sleep Apnea Nighttime Symptoms
Sleep apnea occurs when breath ceases during the normal sleep cycle. People often choke and gasp for air as a result of these attacks. However, many people are unaware of these symptoms as they occur during sleep. Similarly, snoring may be unknown to people who live alone or with others who are not bothered by the noise.
But people with sleep apnea might notice other symptoms at night. They may wake up frequently. Often, they attribute waking to other causes like nightmares or having to urinate. Certainly, the elevated heart rate and sweating that can come with sleep apnea lend credibility to belief that a nightmare was the cause.
Sleep Apnea Daytime Symptoms
This makes it important to understand the daytime symptoms of this common condition.
Daytime symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Frequent morning headaches
- Often waking with a sore throat of dry mouth
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Dozing off while working, watching TV, or driving
- Concentration and memory problems
These daytime hints should not be ignored. Not only do they diminish your quality of life, they are putting your life at risk. People with sleep apnea are at an elevated risk for dangerous and deadly car accidents.
Illnesses Associated with Sleep Apnea
Another way to track down sleep apnea is by awareness of illnesses associated with the condition. Untreated sleep apnea can result in:
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Mood swings
- Depression and anxiety
- Increased aggression
When you experience these conditions, you should consider that you may have sleep apnea. You should also be aware of common misdiagnoses of sleep apnea. If your doctor diagnoses you with low testosterone, hypothyroidism, chronic fatigue, or other similar conditions, then you should talk to your doctor about sleep apnea.
This condition also increases risks for heart attack and stroke, hypertension, and coronary artery disease. To reduce these risks and restore a good night’s sleep, treating sleep apnea is essential.
Our Fairfax dentist utilizes advanced treatment methods to keep airways open and allow for uninterrupted sleep. The best way to learn if one of these noninvasive, customized treatment options is right for you is by calling 703-323-8200 and scheduling a consultation. If you are not certain that you have sleep apnea, Dr. Marzban can provide you with the WatchPAT™ in-home sleep apnea diagnostic tool to help you determine if treatment will be necessary.