Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that is characterized by a reduction or a pause in breathing or instances of shallow breathing during sleep. It is common among adults but more common in children.
During a sleep apnea episode, your airway will repeatedly get blocked, which will limit your oxygen level and build up carbon dioxide in your blood streams. Upper airway obstruction and/or oxyhemoglobin desaturation can occur throughout deep stages of sleep.
Due to these, your body and brain will be deprived of needed oxygen, and you may wake up many times during the night. Some of the daytime signs and symptoms of sleep apnea include things like morning headaches, xerostomia, excessive sleepiness, nonrestorative sleep, difficulty in concentrating, gastroesophageal reflux disease, impaired concentration, depression, irritability, and fatigue.
Types of sleep apnea:
Obstructive Sleep Apnea: Obstructive sleep apnea is a common type of sleep apnea that occurs when the connecting soft tissue in the back of your throat relaxes while you sleep and the airway gets blocked, thus causing you to snore loudly.
Central Sleep Apnea: Central sleep apnea is less common type of sleep apnea that involves in the central nervous system that fails to send proper signal from the brain to the muscles which controls breathing. Patients with central sleep apnea seldom snore.
Complex Sleep Apnea: The combination of obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea is known as complex sleep apnea.
Medications are available to only treat the sleepiness linked with sleep apnea and not the apnea itself, so they should be used in conjunction with other proven sleep apnea treatments.
One of the latest methods for sleep apnea treatment is continuous positive airflow pressure, or CPAP. Provent is also one of the latest techniques used to treat moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea. The detection and treatment related to snoring and obstructive sleep apnea are two areas where dentistry plays a valuable role.