Apnea: Sleeping Without Breath

Categories: Sleep apnea, Snoring

The word “apnea” comes from Greek, and it means “without breath.” Sleep apnea, then, is a condition in which someone’s breathing stops involuntarily as they sleep. It is treatable at Boulder County Smiles in Lafayette.

Sleep apnea is more common than you may realize, affecting more than eighteen million Americans, accordng to the National Sleep Foundation. It affects men more than women. Left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to high blood pressure, headaches, and heart disease, among other conditions.

Types and Symptoms

There are three main types of sleep apnea:

  • Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type. It occurs when the throat muscles relax during sleep.
  • Central sleep apnea is when the brain doesn’t get the body’s signals that control breathing.
  • Complex sleep apnea is a combination of obstructive and central sleep apnea.

Anyone can get aleep apnea, even children. But it’s more common in men than women, especiallly African-American and Hispanic men. Risk factors include being over the age of forty, and being overweight.

The most common symptoms include:

  • Loud snoring
  • Gasping for breath during sleep
  • Headaches in the morning
  • Waking up with a dry mouth
  • Insomnia
  • Excessive sleepiness during the day
  • Shortened attention span
  • Irritability

All of this may sound frightening, and it can be. But there is hope, too, because sleep apnea can be treated at Boulder County Smiles in Lafayette. Treatment begins with an accurate diagnosis. Our patients come to our office from Boulder, Louisville, and Broomfield for apnea treatment, complete general and family dentistry, and much more. Call us to schedule an appointment today!

Contact Boulder County Smiles:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026