Frequent, loud snoring may be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea, which is a common and potentially serious disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts as you sleep. Severe snoring can cause an array of problems, including sleep disturbances for the snorer and other household members as well as waking episodes.  

Snoring does not always result in sleep apnea, but chronic snoring may indicate an underlying sleep disorder. If left untreated, sleep apnea can increase the risk of high blood pressure, heart attacks, diabetes and car accidents due to sleepiness while driving.  

What are the different types of sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is a type of breathing disorder, which is a serious, and potentially life-threatening condition characterized by brief interruptions of breathing during sleep.  There are three types of sleep apnea: 

  • Central – the upper airway is open, but no oxygen is getting into the system.
  • Obstructive – the lungs and the diaphragm are functioning normally, but no oxygen is entering the system because there is an obstruction in the upper airway.
  • Mixed – this is a combination of central and obstructive sleep apnea.

What are the signs and symptoms of sleep apnea?

There are a variety of signs and symptoms associated with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which means it is important to understand what they are. Some of the signs and symptoms of OSA that you should watch out for are: 

  • Snoring.
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness.
  • Gasping or choking during the night.
  • Unrefreshed sleep.
  • Fragmented sleep.
  • Clouded memory.
  • Irritability.
  • Personality changes. 
  • Morning headaches. 

 Have you been told your snore or have stoppage in breathing during your sleep? Or maybe your partner or family member display chronic snoring and pauses in breathing while they sleep?  If so, contact Dr. Mayoor Patel at Craniofacial Pain Center of Georgia for a proper consultation and treatment planning for a better night’s sleep.