Women who suffer from untreated obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) during pregnancy may face an increased risk for health problems, as could their babies, according to a study recently published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology.
Research focused on 175 pregnant women, who were tested for OSA at their homes using a portable sleep monitoring device. Approximately 15 percent of the women were diagnosed with OSA.
Women with OSA had higher weights and were more likely to show signs of high blood pressure than those without sleep apnea. Infants born to women with OSA were more likely to require admission to neonatal intensive care than babies born to women without sleep apnea.
Women with sleep apnea were also more likely to develop high blood pressure during pregnancy and to require delivery by Cesarean section.
The study further illustrates the importance of treating sleep apnea, regardless of gender. As awareness of sleep apnea’s dangers grow and the number of treatment options increase, so does the number of dentists who have become qualified in the field of dental sleep medicine.
Many dentists offer safe, comfortable and effective sleep apnea treatment options, including custom-made oral appliances. If you or your partner experiences regular snoring or other symptoms of sleep apnea, an experienced sleep dentist may be able to help.