Nobody wants to be told they snore while they sleep, and although this problem may be irritating, it doesn’t usually affect general health. Sleep apnoea is a very different matter and is a sleep disorder where people snore loudly before stopping breathing for a short while. Breathing often restarts with a loud gasp or snort. Although not enough to awaken the sufferer, it is sufficient to prevent deep, restful sleep. These episodes can occur hundreds of times a night, resulting in lower oxygen levels that negatively impact general health. Consequently, people with sleep apnoea will often feel unexpectedly sleepy during the day.
If you do have sleep apnoea, ask us for help and advice. We can conduct a dental exam and discuss your symptoms, and if necessary will recommend you have a sleep study. During a sleep study, your sleep is monitored, so the severity of your sleep apnoea can be assessed.
Severe sleep apnoea often needs treatment with a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. This consists of a mask that fits over your nose during sleep so a continuous supply of pressurised air can be pumped into your airway, holding it open.
Mild to more moderate sleep apnoea is often treatable with a comfortable night guard we can make for you that is custom-made to fit your mouth exactly. The night guard works by placing your jaw slightly forwards, helping to hold your airway open while you rest soundly.
We’ve listed six key benefits of treating sleep apnoea below.
- Better Sleep Quality
Improved sleep quality is a major benefit as you can achieve deep, restful REM sleep, which is often impossible for people with sleep apnoea. Imagine awakening feeling refreshed, full of energy and ready to face the day.
- Reduced Risk of Heart Problems
Failing to get enough good quality sleep can increase your risk of hypertension or high blood pressure, which can increase the risk of developing heart problems or stroke. One sleep study discovered that the risk of hypertension was nearly three times greater in people with sleep disturbances like sleep apnoea.
- Lower Risk of Depression
When your sleep is continually disturbed, it increases the risk of depression. The risk of depression increases with the severity of sleep apnoea.
- Reduced Risk of Premature Death
When someone has untreated sleep apnoea, the risk of dying from any cause is up to 3 times higher compared with people who can sleep soundly.
- Managing Diabetes More Effectively
People with untreated sleep apnoea are at higher risk of developing diabetes. Those who already have diabetes will find that treating sleep apnoea helps them control their blood sugar levels more easily, leading to better insulin resistance.
- Reduced Risk of Cancer
A study published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine discovered that people with obstructive sleep apnoea, the most common form of sleep apnoea, had a higher cancer rate. These people were under age 65 and the most common cancers diagnosed were lung, colorectal, breast and prostate cancer.