Sleep apnea is a relatively common condition that affects more than 200,000 Americans each year. Patients with sleep apnea experience short pauses in breathing throughout the night. While not immediately life threatening, the lack of oxygen over time can have a negative impact on a patient’s organs and overall health and can cause prolonged problems related to sleep deprivation. While sleep apnea is relatively easy to treat if addressed, many individuals may not even realize that they have the condition until it’s too late. Here are some common signs you should look out for if you think that you or a loved one might have sleep apnea.
Loud, Prolonged Snoring
A little snoring is completely normal, especially if you’re congested due to allergies or a cold. However, if your snoring lasts throughout the entire night and is loud enough to be heard from down the hall, you could be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Sudden Waking with Shortness of Breath
If you frequently find yourself startled awake gasping for air or experiencing shortness of breath, you could be suffering from sleep apnea. A choking sensation in the throat is also a common symptom.
Grogginess and Exhaustion
Do you ever feel tired throughout the day for no explicable reason? If you’ve done everything you can to get a good night’s sleep and still wake up feeling tired, it could be a sign that sleep apnea is prohibiting your body from fully getting the rest that it needs during the night.
If you regularly wake up with a dry, dehydrated mouth in the morning, it could be a sign of sleep apnea. When you have difficulty breathing normally, your body’s response can be to gasp for air through your mouth. A prolonged period of this will dry out your mouth over the course of a night.
Relief for Patients with Sleep Apnea
Fortunately, sleep apnea is not an incurable ailment. Several solutions exist that can help offer relief for patients struggling with sleep apnea. Since most cases of sleep apnea exist in overweight people and are caused by excess pressure being put on the airway, simple lifestyle changes to lose some excess weight and boost respiratory health can go a long way in treating the condition. CPAP and airway orthotics can also help keep your airway open, making breathing easier. In more difficult cases, surgical options might be beneficial. If you think you or a loved one may be suffering from sleep apnea, contact our office for a consultation today!
195 Stock Street #310
Hanover, PA 17331
Phone: (717) 633-5874