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Have you ever awoken in the middle of the night and it wasn’t a bad dream or a loud noise that woke you up? If you find yourself waking up frequently, you could be experiencing sleep apnea, which is a condition where the airway becomes blocked or the brain fails to send the proper signals for breathing to occur. 

Sleep apnea can have serious health consequences. If left unchecked, sleep apnea could cause or increase your risk for diabetes, ADD, ADHD, mood swings, depression, high blood pressure, strokes, heart attacks, and even death. If you suffer from sleep apnea, seek treatment immediately. Here are some signs to look for:

— Sleep apnea is most often found in men over the age of 40.

— Sleep apnea is often found in individuals who are overweight.

— If you suffer from a temporomandibular disorder, also called TMD, you might be at an increased risk for sleep apnea.

— Sleep apnea is frequently spotted in individuals who snore while asleep.

— Your body’s position as you sleep could increase your chance for obstructed airways and sleep apnea.

— Large tonsils, susceptible genetics, a deviated septum, and various allergies can all increase your risk for sleep apnea.

Depending on the severity of your sleep apnea, you can be treated by wearing an oral appliance. This is most helpful for those who have mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. This custom oral appliance fits over your teeth to keep your airway open while you get a good night’s sleep. The appliance prevents your tongue from blocking the air passage, as well as holding your jaw in a position the keeps the airway from blocking. 

For an oral exam to check for sleep apnea and any treatments you may need, please contact Dr. Chet B. Hawkins in Houston, Texas, by calling 281-488-4242. We look forward to helping you achieve the quality of sleep you deserve!