Sleep apnoea occurs when the walls of the throat come together during sleep, blocking off the upper airway & stopping breathing for some time. It generally lasts for a few seconds or up to one minute until the brain registers the lack of breathing or drop in oxygen levels and sends a small wake-up call. The sleeper rouses slightly, opens the upper airway, typically snorts and gasps, and drifts back to sleep almost immediately.
Poor sleep quality can have a significant effect on your daily life. Speak to a dentist from MC Dental if you suffer any symptoms that suggest you’re missing out on a good night’s sleep. Your dentist can help identify if the structure of your mouth and nasal cavities are contributing factors.
At MC Dental, our team can also discuss potential treatments that may improve your sleep and provide relief. There’s no need to put up with a bad night’s sleep. Seek friendly, experienced advice from MC Dental.
Symptoms of sleep apnoea
Some of the associated symptoms of sleep apnoea include:
- Daytime sleepiness, fatigue and tiredness
- Poor concentration
- Loud snoring
- Interrupted sleep with a gasping for air
- Irritability and noticeable mood changes
- Impotence and reduced sex drive
- Frequently going to the bathroom at nighttime.
Obesity is one of the most common causes of sleep apnoea, with other contributors being:
- Alcohol (especially in the evening, as it relaxes the throat muscles & hampers the brain’s reaction to breathing)
- Sleeping tablets and sedatives (or similar medications)
- Nasal congestion and obstruction
- Facial bone shape and muscle size (such as an undershot jaw)
- Certain illnesses, such as reduced thyroid production or an enlarged goitre
- Large tonsils (especially in children)