Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can increase your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other health problems. Fortunately, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America in Arlington, TX, can help you find a treatment that eases your sleep apnea symptoms.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when you stop breathing while you sleep. Although each breathing pause may last only seconds, you may experience hundreds of pauses throughout the night. Sleep apnea deprives your brain of oxygen and makes it more likely that you'll develop a serious health condition like diabetes.
You may have sleep apnea and not even know it. Do you ever wake up during the night choking or gasping for air? When you stop breathing, choking or gasping is the way your body forces you to start breathing again. Are you abnormally tired during the day, even though you got a full night's sleep? Sleep apnea may be to blame.
Other symptoms of sleep apnea can include:
- Loud snoring
- Morning headaches or sore throats
- Difficulty concentrating
- Night sweats
- Dry mouth
- Weight gain
How is sleep apnea treated?
Sleep apnea treatment depends on the cause of the condition. You may develop sleep apnea if your tongue falls against your throat while you sleep, the walls of your throat or the roof of your mouth collapse, or your brain doesn't control the muscles involved in breathing correctly.
Treatment options include:
- Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) Machine: A steady stream of air delivered through a small mask keeps your airway open, preventing sleep apnea. CPAP machines offer a very effective way to stop breathing pauses. During your visit to the Arlington sleep clinic, your doctor can help you find the best type of mask for you.
- Oral Appliance: The oral appliance fits over your teeth while you sleep. The device holds your jaw forward and stops your tongue from blocking your throat.
- Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPP): This surgical treatment involves removing extra tissue from the roof of your mouth.
- Thermal Ablation: Tissues in your soft palate, tongue and nasal turbinates are heated during thermal ablation, reducing their size.
- Pillar Implants: Rigid rods placed in the roof of your mouth stop the area from collapsing while you sleep.
Do you think you may have sleep apnea? Call your Arlington, TX, cardiologist, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America, at (817) 419-7220 to schedule an appointment.