Relief from sleep apnea at London dentist
The word ‘apnea’ comes from the Greek for ‘without breath’, so in its most basic form sleep apnea means ‘sleep without breath’. It occurs in three forms called obstructive, central and mixed. Obstructive is by far the most common form of the condition but in all cases the condition means that people stop breathing repeatedly during the night, often for a minute or longer.
Obstructive sleep apnea, known as OSA, occurs when the airway is blocked by the collapse of soft tissue at the back of the throat preventing breathing. Central sleep apnea happens because the brain omits to send a signal to the lungs to breathe. This is caused by a malfunction in the central respiratory area of the brain. The brain will usually kick start the breathing after a certain point but it can result in disrupted and poor sleep.
Sleep apnea is a surprisingly common condition but sufferers are often completely unaware that there is anything wrong because it happens when they are unconscious. Various factors make the condition more likely such as being overweight and male but it can happen to anyone of any age and is not uncommon in children.
Untreated apnea can result in high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems and can have serious effects on the quality of life of sufferers. Treatments vary depending on the cause but for obstructive apnea, London dentists can make appliances that keep the airways open during the night. If you think you may be suffering from sleep apnea, make an appointment to see a London dentist to discuss your symptoms.