Sleep Apnea Is More Serious Than Just a Good Night’s Sleep

man-909049_960_720Sleep apnea is a serious condition in which a person’s airway is repeatedly blocked during sleep, cutting off their air supply. People with sleep apnea suffer from disrupted sleep and low blood oxygen levels that can lead to other very serious health problems like heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.

It’s important to recognize the symptoms of sleep apnea and to get a consultation from a sleep specialist or oral surgeon to get a diagnosis. If you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms, you should schedule a consultation:

  • Noticeable pauses in breathing during sleep
  • Loud snoring
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness or drowsiness
  • Dry mouth/Sore throat
  • Loss of concentration
  • Morning headaches
  • Depression

An oral surgeon will become involved if sleep apnea is a result of structural issues, like excess soft tissue at the rear of the throat or smaller airways or nasal passages. Sometimes, however, sleep apnea is a result of smoking or it is hereditary and passed down through families.

Screen Shot 2015-11-30 at 4.04.32 PMThere are several treatment options for sleep apnea and the right oral surgeon can help determine which will be most effective for you. Treatment ranges from a non-invasive CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine all the way to surgery. Usually a CPAP machine is the first treatment option, as it is extremely effective and meant for at-home use. The CPAP device delivers pressurized oxygen through a nasal mask to limit obstruction at night and ease breathing. If the CPAP machine doesn’t work, surgery will usually be performed to tighten the soft palate, or in more serious cases, reposition the jaw.


Sleep apnea is a very serious condition that needs careful attention and treatment. If you think you’re suffering from sleep apnea, call Dr. Elias and Dr. Paonessa at Mamaroneck Oral Surgery to schedule an appointment, 914-873-0045.

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