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Why Should I Treat My Sleep Apnea?

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Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition where when you sleep, the muscles in the back of your nose and throat relax and block your airway, which causes you to choke and gasp until oxygen is returned. This severely disrupts your nighttime sleep because as you fall asleep, the same muscles relax to block your airways. When this happens, your body again reacts to the lack of oxygen, causing a vicious cycle of sleep, wake to breathe, sleep, and wake again, all within minutes of each other.

A good night’s sleep is necessary to your overall health, and obstructive sleep apnea (also known as OSA) can prevent you from restfully sleeping at night. This can lead to daytime sleepiness, drowsiness, and chronic fatigue, all of which can be dangerous. Drowsiness while driving or operating machinery has enormous risks, while chronic fatigue can affect your mood, leading to crankiness, sadness, and possible depression.

Not only is the lack of sleep dangerous, but the lack of oxygen which results from OSA can have serious repercussions. If left untreated, OSA can significantly increase your risk of health problems, including:

– High blood pressure
– Diabetes
– Headaches
– Heart attack
– Impotence
– Heart disease

Because these risks are so serious, it’s extremely important to check for OSA if you believe you are having trouble sleeping. OSA can be a disconcerting thing, and the experts at Refresh Dental are here to help. Our team would be happy to discuss possible treatment options with you, including our specialty: oral appliance therapy.

For more information, feel free to call our Bentonville, Arkansas, office at 479-339-0081 to discuss what treatment options may be right for you.