Friday, May 31, 2013

Understanding Your Sleep Apnea Treatment Options (There’s Much More than CPAP)

When it comes to treating the common and potentially fatal sleep disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)—in which your breathing stops periodically during sleep—there are a number of options, but many people are only familiar with the commonly used (and often abandoned) CPAP machine.

CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure, and the CPAP device entails a mask worn over the nose and mouth as you sleep. This mask is connected to an air tube, through which a small machine circulates air, allowing you to breathe without interruption as you sleep.

Although effective for patients who can tolerate it, CPAP is abandoned early in treatment by many patients who find it cumbersome. Unfortunately, successful sleep apnea treatment typically requires long-term commitment.

That’s why the network of physicians affiliated with I Hate CPAP is here to help you diagnose the source of your sleep apnea, discuss more comfortable treatments, and help you and your loved ones restore restful, healthy sleep. Please call us today at 1-8-NO-PAP-MASK to locate a knowledgeable sleep physician near you.

In recent years, the field of dental sleep medicine has grown to include a number of customizable oral devices designed to be form-fitting, comfortable and effective. These oral appliances are similar to sports mouthguards, and they are custom-made to help you maintain proper jaw position and airflow as you sleep.

If you or a family member suffers from chronic snoring or other symptoms of sleep apnea, please contact I Hate CPAP to find a qualified physician near you.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Researchers Hone in on Asthma as Obstructive Sleep Apnea Risk Factor

According to new research, asthma may be an identifying risk factor for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a potentially deadly sleep disorder that affects tens of millions of Americans of all ages.

University of Wisconsin researchers have been reviewing data from the Wisconsin Sleep Cohort Study, which has followed about 1,500 participants since 1988. They found that patients with asthma were nearly twice as likely to have developed sleep apnea during the eight-year follow-up review; the number was even higher among those who developed asthma as children.

While previous studies have shown that OSA is more common among people with asthma, no other research had focused the progression of the potential relationship between sleep apnea and asthma. The University of Wisconsin of Wisconsin study indicates that the duration of asthma also impacted individual chances for developing sleep apnea.

Although research has not yet established the precise link between asthma and obstructive sleep apnea, the study is ongoing and the association between asthma and sleep apnea provides another diagnostic tool. Other known risk factors of obstructive sleep apnea include:

  • Obesity
  • Narrow airway
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Family history of sleep apnea

If you or a family member suffers from nightly snoring and other symptoms of sleep apnea, it’s important to schedule an appointment with a knowledgeable doctor. If not treated, obstructive sleep apnea can increase your risk for heart attack, hypertension, cardiac arrhythmia and stroke among other problems.

Please contact I Hate CPAP today to get answers to your sleep apnea questions and to locate a qualified physician near you.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Importance of Sleep Apnea Testing and How a Dentist can Help

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a potentially life-threatening health problem suffered by tens of millions of Americans, and it often goes undiagnosed. While home sleep apnea tests are increasing in popularity because they offer convenience and cost-effectiveness over sleep centers, they may miss mild, developing instances of OSA.

A May 14, 2013, article in The Wall Street Journal found that home testing is usually accurate for those with moderate to severe cases of sleep apnea. However, because home sleep tests do not monitor brain-wave patterns, they may overestimate your actual sleep time and underevaluate your rate of apnea events.

Home sleep tests have a success rate of 80 to 90 percent, according to the author of an Emory University sleep center study on home testing accuracy who was quoted in the article. Additional testing catches most remaining cases.

The key is to undergo testing. Many patients ignore common signs of obstructive sleep apnea, such as loud, regular snoring.

In addition to snoring, other sleep apnea symptoms include:
  • Recurring daytime drowsiness
  • Waking up choking or gasping for air
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Morning headaches
If you suffer from any of these symptoms, a dentist with training in the field of dental sleep medicine can assess your condition; if necessary, your dentist may arrange a home test or refer you to a sleep center. In many cases, your dentist can help you and your family restore healthy, restful sleep through the use of a comfortable and effective oral appliance.

To learn more about sleep apnea testing and to locate a qualified sleep dentist near you, please contact I Hate CPAP. We welcome patients from Wisconsin, Illinois and across the United States.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Wide-Reaching Impacts of Obstructive Sleep Apnea

The effects of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can impact every area of your life, from work or school to your relationships to your health.

The symptoms of sleep apnea often emerge with snoring. Although snoring alone does not mean you suffer from OSA, it is the most widely reported symptom; the snoring associated with sleep apnea is generally loud, nightly snoring that becomes progressively more intense.

Snoring may be accompanied by waking from sleep choking or gasping for air. Because individuals with sleep apnea experience breathing interruptions during sleep and are not receiving sufficient restful sleep, the adverse effects of OSA begin to present themselves during waking hours.

Those with sleep apnea may suffer from morning headaches, chronic daytime fatigue, difficulty focusing, symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, mood swings, memory problems, anxiety and depression among other symptoms. These factors can impact your ability to drive and focus on job-related or school-related tasks.

Obstructive sleep apnea can also heighten your risk for severe health problems including hypertension, heart attack, stroke and cardiac arrhythmia. While the chances of developing OSA increase with age, sleep apnea can affect anyone regardless of age, race or gender.

If you or a loved one experiences regular snoring in addition to other sleep apnea symptoms, it is advisable to undergo an exam and evaluation with a dentist who is qualified in the field of dental sleep medicine. There are a number of comfortable and effective sleep apnea treatment options available, including custom-made oral appliances similar to sports mouthguards.

Please contact I Hate CPAP to locate a knowledgeable sleep dentist near you. We are proud to help sleep apnea sufferers and their family members from Wisconsin, Illinois and across the United States.