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Quietsleep® has set up this initial wiki on dentistry's involvement in the recognition and management of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. Currently this is a mini-Wiki and can only be promoted to full stature with your involvement. We need at least 20 contributors to promote this information. Please log in and add to the Wiki.
Snoring is No Joke...
Nearly one half of adults snore. And the problem is worse with overweight persons.
Snoring occurs when there is a partial obstruction to the free flow of air through the mouth and nose. The sound occurs when loose structures in the throat, like the uvula and soft palate, vibrate as air passes over them. Snoring can get worse when the muscles in the back of the throat are too relaxed either from drugs that induce sleep or alcohol consumption. Snoring can also be caused by a large uvula and soft palate, nasal congestion, a deviated septum or other obstructions in the nasal and pharyngeal airways.In children, large tonsils and adenoids can be the cause of snoring. Pregnant women snore because of a narrowing of the airway and increased weight.
Can snoring be serious?
Snoring can be serious both socially and medically.
Snoring can disrupt marriages and cause sleepless nights for bed partners.
Medically, snoring can be the precursor of obstructive sleep apnea that has been linked to heart failure, high blood pressure and stroke. In its own right, snoring has been linked to Type II Diabetes. Sleep apnea usually interrupts loud snoring with a period of silence in which no air passes into the lungs. eventually the lack of oxygen and the increase carbon dioxide will awaken you forcing the airway to open with a loud gasp. ask your physician or dentist
You may not be aware of your snoring but your bed partner is! Seeking professional advice can help you both because snoring not only causes disruption in sleep it can also be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea.
If your child snores, speak to your pediatrician about the problem. Nose and throat problems as well as obesity may be the cause. Treating these conditions could help your child sleep better at night and help your child's mental and physical development to stay on track.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
When obstructive sleep apnea occurs, the tongue is sucked against the back of the throat. This blocks the upper airway and air flow stops. When the oxygen level in the brain becomes low enough, the sleeper partially awakens, the obstruction in the throat clears and the flow of air starts again, usually with a loud gasp. People with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) have disrupted sleep, and low blood oxygen levels.
OSA has been associated with cardiovascular problems, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, ED and excessive daytime sleepiness which can (and does) lead to danger on the road, in the air and on the sea.
Quietsleep.com is dedicated to bringing the most current information on dentistry's role in the recognition and management of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea to the public around the world. Quietsleep.com's mandate is to continually remain aware of advances in the field and to provide access to those dentists who are qualified to treat these medical problems in conjunction with sleep physicians. Our ongoing goal is to improve the health of the public globally through increasing awareness of how dentists can help.