Snoring is fairly common as 73 percent of people report to sleep with someone who tends to snore at night. In most cases, snoring is perfectly normal. However, for those who have excessively loud or chronic snoring, it may be an indication of a larger underlying problem. Chronic snoring one of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea, a sleep disorder that causes pauses in breathing at night. It is estimated, nearly 18 million Americans suffer from the sleep disorder. It is predicted that number may be far higher as two to four Americans are suspected to have undiagnosed sleep apnea. Those who snore excessively need to undergo a sleep study to see if sleep apnea treatment in Encinitas is necessary.
The most common form of sleep apnea is caused from an obstruction in the airway. The soft tissues in the back of the throat collapse, causing the airways to narrow. As the airways narrow, snoring occurs. However, the complications of the narrowed air passages are far more serious than just snoring. As the airway collapse, it causes pauses in breathing to occur. These pauses in breathing can occur hundreds of times per night with each event potentially lasting longer than a minute. When left untreated, the long-term implications of the decreased oxygen cause potentially deadly complications on overall health. In addition, your quality of life will drastically decrease.
To protect your health and quality of life, you must receive treatment for the sleep disorder. There are various treatment options available. Among the most common and preferred forms of treatment involves the use of oral appliances. Oral appliances are similar in look as athletic mouthguards. They are worn over the teeth at night while you sleep. The appliances work by repositioning the jaw forward to keep the airways open. Oral appliances are effective for treating cases of obstructive sleep apnea, as well as reducing chronic snoring.
In some cases, an oral appliance may not be effective, causing a CPAP machine to be needed. A CPAP machine is a device that is worn at night to deliver air through a mask that is worn of the mouth or nose. The light air stream works to keep the airways open, decreasing the number of pauses in breathing. While this treatment is effective, many tend to find it uncomfortable and inconvenient.
If you suffer from chronic snoring, it is important to discuss your concerns with your doctor to undergo a sleep study. During a sleep study, you will be monitored to determine if sleep apnea is the cause of the snoring. After analyzing the data from the study, a prescription will be written for treatment.
Dr. McElroy offers the sleep apnea treatment options you need to protect your health and sleep quality. Based on your individual needs and preference level, Dr. McElroy will determine which treatment will be the most suitable.
If you are in need of treatment for sleep apnea, contact our office today to schedule a consultation.