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Feeling tired most days? Well, the problem may not be your bedtime, your television or your mobile device—although these may not be helping you get enough rest. The reason you’re tired may be a serious medical condition called sleep apnea. Fortunately, your Fort Worth, TX, dentist Dr. Mark Givan offers treatment so you sleep well again.
Sleep Apnea is a chronic condition that not only affects your nightly sleep, but your overall health and well-being, too. In a person with sleep apnea, breathing actually halts for a short period of time—anywhere from a few seconds to a full minute. As these events can occur over and over through the night (and night after night) the cumulative effect on your body can have serious consequences to your overall health and well-being.
The first thing you may notice, of course, is that you're tired during the day. Unfortunately, this is no ordinary drowsiness. Sleep apnea has been shown to be a leading cause of car accidents. Thus, the need for a proper diagnosis is imperative.
Beyond feeling tired during the day, sleep apnea can have other side effects, too. Your heart may be the first organ of the body to bear the burden of sleep apnea. When you exhale during breathing, you eliminate carbon dioxide. But when your breathing halts during a sleep apnea episode, carbon dioxide builds up in your bloodstream, and your heart must work hard to eliminate the excess. This stresses your heart.
Another problem caused by sleep apnea is high blood pressure, or hypertension. Left untreated, hypertension reduces the effectiveness of your heart’s ability, so that blood is less forcefully pumped and your body may not be able to function properly.
Still other side effects of sleep apnea are a higher occurrence of obesity and diabetes. Studies show that people who don’t get enough sleep have a higher level of the hormone that tells you you’re hungry and a reduce level of the hormone that tells you you’re full. And with weight gain, there is a greater likelihood of diabetes, type 2 diabetes, in particular.
Dr. Givan has helped many patients with sleep apnea and he can help you, too. By prescribing a simple yet effective oral appliance, you’ll sleep better and reduce your risk of the serious health concerns that are linked to sleep apnea. Custom-fitted for your mouth, this oral appliance moves your lower jaw and your tongue slightly forward. Doing so opens your airway and prevents your tongue and the other soft tissue in your throat from collapsing and blocking your breath. Thus, you breathe easier and the snoring that is often a telltale sign of sleep apnea stops. You and your bed partner will sleep better and you’ll enjoy the numerous health benefits of sleeping peacefully through the night.
If you suspect that you might have sleep apnea, then take action before the side effects take a toll on your health. Give us a call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Givan. We're happy to offer general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry care to patients in and around Fort Worth.