90 million Americans snore, and about 45 million suffer from sleep apnea. Snoring and sleep apnea may have similar symptoms, but there are key differences between the two.
Snoring may be annoying, but is not as severe a condition as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), and can often lead to sleep apnea. OSA is a serious problem in which breathing is obstructed during sleep. Regular snoring may not wake you up, but with OSA you may wake up so that you can breathe again.
When you fall asleep, the tissues in your airways relax and become smaller. However, problems arise when the airways are obstructed. In severe cases, if a person with OSA does not wake up, they could have a stroke, heart attack, or die because of the condition.
Common Signs of Sleep Apnea
Look for the signs that may lead to sleep apnea:
- Sleeping with your mouth open
- Consistent and loud snoring
- Being excessively tired during the daytime
- Feeling like you have to wake up to breathe
Professional medical diagnosis and treatment may be needed if you notice that these symptoms occur consistently.
Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea
If you have often found yourself waking up and struggling to breathe, Coastal Virginia Sleep Solutions have treatment options for you. Dr. William Harper will determine if your snoring is related to sleep apnea with a quick medical evaluation. Dr. Harper may find that you need oral appliance therapy if you are diagnosed with mild to moderate sleep apnea.
Oral appliances are similar to mouthguards in that they are custom-fit to each and every patient. However, they are different in the way that they open up the airways and relax jaw muscles so that you can sleep restfully. Several appliances that we carry for our patients are Herbst Advance, the Tap Adjustable Appliance, and the EMA Sleep Appliance.
Schedule an Appointment
Don’t wait for your sleep problems to increase in frequency and severity. Learn more about your sleep apnea treatment options and call Coastal Virginia Sleep Solutions at (757) 659-1017 for a consultation or schedule an appointment with us online here today.