Sleep Apnea Self-Assessment
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that can have serious implications on the person’s life. People who suffer from sleep apnea experience disrupted breathing while sleeping. Their breathing stops and starts, and because of the heavy breathing and overworking of muscles, they are unable to get a full night’s sleep. They wake up feeling tired and exhausted. It affects their mood during the day, and this can be noticed in the form of poor performance at work or irritability while dealing with people.
The most noticeable symptoms of sleep apnea are snoring, gasping, heaving breathing during the night, and fatigue during the day. The main problem with sleep apnea is that patients may be unaware of their disorder for years if they sleep alone, and no one else is there to observe the tell-tale signs during the night. But once their partner or roommate informs them about the symptoms and the frequency and severity of it, patients may consider consulting a sleep expert to conduct a sleep test to help them diagnose the disorder and seek treatment for it.
Types of Sleep Apnea
There are 3 types of sleep apnea. The most common type of sleep apnea is known as obstructive sleep apnea. While sleeping, the patient’s throat muscles relax. This blocks the air passages, and for brief periods of time, the person is unable to breathe involuntarily. Even though the condition is not deadly, and even with partial breathing, the patient is able to receive the necessary oxygen supply, the continuity of this condition can have an adverse effect on the patient’s overall health and well-being.
The second type of sleep apnea is known as central sleep apnea. This occurs when the brain is unable to send messages to the muscles that are responsible for respiration. Because the muscles fail to expand and contract and perform their functions, the patient’s breathing becomes disrupted.
The third type of sleep apnea is known as complex sleep apnea syndrome. In the case a patient suffers from both; obstructive sleep apnea as well as central sleep apnea, then he or she will be said to have complex sleep apnea syndrome.
It is to be noted that all types of sleep can be treated as long as it is diagnosed correctly and on time.
At Home Sleep Apnea Assessment
When it comes to the self-assessment of sleep apnea, there are two ways to do it. Either you rely on your partner or the person that you share your room with to monitor the symptoms of sleep apnea such as snoring, gasping, decreased breathing rate, increased heart rate, and sudden jerky movements like the movement of limbs, or you use the portable and handy sleep monitor that your doctor has prescribed to you.
The small sleep monitor can be connected to your temples and will record your heart rate, breathing rate, and blood oxygen level as you sleep. The data that has been collected from this device will be used to make the proper diagnosis of your condition. However, it is to be noted that in many cases, the sleep monitor may not provide reliable results, and eventually, the sleep expert will have to admit you to a sleep center to keep you under observation for a night. You will be plugged into an advanced and detailed version of your simple home-based sleep monitor, and it will even record your brain waves to give the doctor an idea about your brain activity while sleeping. The results will indicate whether or not you have sleep apnea and if you do, then at what stage it is and what type.
Treatment for Sleep Apnea
The treatment methods for sleep apnea include:
||Oral appliance therapy such as wearing removable night mouthguard, mandibular repositioning devices, or tongue retaining devices.
||Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy involves wearing an oxygen mask to keep the airways open.
||Surgeries like tissue or muscle removal or repositioning surgery for the jaw to create more space at the back of the throat
If you or anyone in your family is suffering from sleep apnea, then please visit us at Davis Dental Practice. Our team of sleep experts and dental surgeons include Our doctors and our doctors. Call us today at (530) 756-5300 to schedule your appointment.