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Sleep Apnoea and Snoring

Sleep plays a vital role in maintaining our overall health and wellbeing.  When left untreated, sleep apnoea and snoring can have a detrimental impact on our nervous system, leading to a higher risk of developing serious medical conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. To find out more, simply give us a call on 08 9440 4455 or complete the form below to request an appointment with our friendly dental professionals today.

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OPEN HOURS

 

Monday: 8am - 5.30pm

Tuesday: 8am - 5.30pm

Wednesday: 8am - 5.30pm

Thursday: 8am - 7pm

Friday: 8am - 1pm

Saturday: Closed

Sunday: Closed

OUR ADDRESS

3 / 734 Karrinyup Rd,
Stirling WA 6021

ABOUT SLEEP APNOEA AND SNORING

Sleep plays a vital role in maintaining our overall health. When we sleep our body is able to repair itself so that we wake up feeling refreshed and ready to take on the day.

If we don’t get enough sleep, our bodies aren’t able to properly recharge and we can wake feeling drowsy, moody and unwell. If this happens night after night then this can also have a detrimental impact on our nervous system, leading to a higher risk of developing serious medical conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke.

 

SNORING

While snoring is extremely common and in many cases, does not impact our sleeping pattern,excessive snoring can lead to various problems including sleep disturbance, relationship conflict andfrequent and sudden waking during the night. In extreme cases, it can also cause sleep apnoea – serious and potentially fatal disorder where your airways become partially or fully blocked and you stop breathing.

SLEEP APNOEA

It is important to distinguish between snoring and sleep apnoea. While snoring is extremely common and in many cases does not impact our sleeping pattern, sleep apnoea is a serious and potentially fatal condition characterised by repeated episodes of airway obstruction and muscle spasms due to the relaxation of the tongue and throat muscles. This reduces the supply of oxygen to vital organs including the brain and the heart. When the brain realises there is a problem, it creates a muscle spasm in order to shock the system awake and clear the airway so that you can breathe again. Although an apnoea episode can last up to a minute or so, this fragmented cycle of sleeping and breathing can occur more than one hundred times per night.

Common signs and symptoms of sleep apnoea include:

  • Waking up frequently through the night gasping for breath
  • Moodiness, irritability and drowsiness during the day
  • Poor concentration
  • Waking feeling tired and unrefreshed
  • Morning headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Dry mouth and a sore throat
  • Frequent need to urinate during the night

If left untreated, sleep apnoea can lead to serious health complications and issues including high blood pressure, heart failure, stroke and death.

TREATMENT OPTIONS FOR SNORING AND SLEEP APNOEA

Removable oral mouth pieces such as Mandibular Anterior Repositioning splints (MAS Appliance) are one way to help treat snoring as well as mild and moderate sleep apnoea. Resembling a mouthguard, splints keep your lower jaw forward to help keep your airways open while you sleep. Choosing to wear one of these snoring mouthpiece devices certainly has its advantages over traditional surgical options. Not only is the device relatively inexpensive, but it is also non-invasive and easy to incorporate and adjust to in your everyday life. If you no longer want or need to use the appliance, simply take it out of your mouth.

Depending on the severity of your snoring or sleep apnoea, you may need a chin strap or CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine which uses a steady and gentle stream of air to keep your airways open throughout the night while you sleep. In cases where traditional treatment options have been not been effective, some people may elect to have their extra tissue in their throat surgically removed or their jaw, nose and facial bone structure adjusted.

While it may be tempting to explore natural at-home remedies for treating snoring or sleep apnoea, it is important to chat to your local doctor or dentist about the best treatment options for you.

If you are having trouble sleeping, simply give us a call on 08 9445 4400 or request an appointment with one of our friendly dental professionals to discuss your treatment options today.

While it may be tempting to explore natural at-home remedies for treating snoring or sleep apnoea, it is important to chat to your local doctor or dentist about the best treatment options for you. 

SLEEP APNOEA AND SNORING FAQs

Why do I snore?

Snoring happens when your airways partially close during your sleep. This makes the surrounding tissues in your throat vibrate which causes the familiar ‘snoring’ sound.  Sometimes the tongue can also fall back over the airway, blocking your airways and your breathing, called sleep apnoea. 

A number of different factors may explain why you snore such as a misaligned jaw or weak throat muscles.  If you are overweight, there is an increased opportunity for the fat to gather in the throat, obstructing the airways. Congestion in the nasal passageway and enlarged tonsils can also contribute to the problem as well as alcohol and certain medications which have been known to relax the throat.

Although many people assume that only an ear, nose and throat specialist can correct snoring and sleep apnoea, there are ways that your dentist can help you too.  

What causes sleep apnoea?

In adults, the most common cause of sleep apnoea is obesity, which causes excess fatty tissue to gather in the throat, blocking the airways. Other common causes include a misaligned jaw, weak throat muscles and alcohol and certain drugs have also been known to relax the throat.

In children, sleep apnoea is most often caused by enlarged tonsils and adenoids which can partially or completely block the airway when infected.

What are the harmful effectsof sleep apnoea?

While snoring can be disruptive and lead to conflict between you and your bed mate, sleep apnoea is a condition that raises your risk for other serious health issues including:

  • High blood pressure – When your body shocks you awake so that you can breathe again, this creates stress in the body. As a result, your hormones go into overdrive, dropping your level of oxygen and boosting your blood pressure. If you already have high blood pressure, you may find that the problem worsens with sleep apnoea and improves with sleep apnoea treatment.
  • Diabetes – Studies have shown that there is a common occurrence of sleep apnoea among people with type 2 diabetes. Excessive weight gain or obesity raises the risk of both disorders. When you aren’t able to sleep properly, your body is not able to repair itself or use it’s insulin properly which can lead to diabetes.
  • Cardiovascular disease – Also known as heart disease, this condition is more likely to occur among people with sleep apnoea. The stress on the body from waking up so often throughout the night disrupts your body’s intake of oxygen, making it difficult for the brain to control the blood flow to your arteries and vital organs such as the brain and the heart.
How severe is my sleep apnoea?

There are different levels of sleep apnoea which are dependent on the amount of airflow that is disturbed and the impact of this disturbed airflow on the body.

A mild to moderate case of sleep apnoea is distinguished by breathing that stops more than five to 30 times per hour while a severe sufferer may experience more than 30 or more airflow drops during each hour of their sleep.

A sleep study and consultation with a sleep physician is recommended if you suspect you may suffer from sleep apnoea.

CONTACT US TODAY

If you’re ready to experience The Dental Studio Stirling difference, please give us a call on 08 9440 4455 or request an appointment to meet with one of our friendly dental professionals today.