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snoring man and annoyed woman covering ears with pillow

While it can be quite disruptive to your bed partner, snoring is common. However, you shouldn’t just ignore your snoring habit, especially if you have been told you snore loudly or it occurs with episodes of gasping for air throughout the night. This can indicate sleep apnea, a sleep condition that is far more dangerous to your health than simple or primary snoring.

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea occurs when the throat muscles relax during sleep and the upper airway becomes blocked. This sleep condition may cause patients to snore but also stop breathing for seconds or even minutes at a time. When oxygen levels drop to a certain low point because of lack of air, the brain triggers you to wake up and gasp for air. Those with sleep apnea may do this hundreds of times a night without even realizing. Unfortunately, sleep apnea doesn’t go unscathed during the day.

Daytime Problems Due to Nighttime Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea isn’t just an inconvenience. It’s a medical condition that can interfere with your quality of life and overall health if not treated properly. In fact, there are several serious daytime consequences from the compromised quality of sleep you get with sleep apnea, including:

  • Cognitive problems
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Drowsy driving
  • Glaucoma
  • Heart attack
  • High blood pressure
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Mood problems
  • Stroke
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Weight gain/obesity

If you are a smoker, overweight, have large tonsils, suffer from endocrine or neuromuscular disorders or have heart or kidney failure, you are more at risk for sleep apnea.

How Your Dentist Can Help

Once sleep apnea is diagnosed, it is often treated with a continuous positive airway pressure (or C-PAP) device that you can wear during sleep. However, C-PAP machines can be uncomfortable and cumbersome. Not all patients can tolerate this form of treatment. Fortunatley, a sleep apnea dentist can offer an alternative therapy to help you (and your partner) get a healthy night’s sleep. At Peninsula Dentistry, we proudly offer both oral appliance therapy and laser therapy as alternatives to traditional C-PAP treatment. Call our Charleston dental clinic today to learn more!

Posted on behalf of Peninsula Cosmetic & Family Dentistry

538 Savannah Hwy
Charleston, SC 29407

Phone: (843) 507-5481
FAX: (843) 577-4653

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Meet Our Doctors

Dr. James B. Wisner

Dr. James B. Wisner was raised in Charleston and attended Porter-Gaud High School. He graduated from The Honors College at The University of South Carolina in 1996 and received his D.M.D. degree in 2002 from the Medical University of South Carolina’s College of Dental Medicine. Dr. Wisner served in Las Vegas, Nevada and Spangdahlem, Germany…

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Dr. Caitlin McPherson

Dr. Caitlin McPherson was born and raised in Charleston, South Carolina. A graduate of Porter Gaud High School, she went on to receive her Bachelors of Science from Clemson University’s Calhoun Honors College. Dr. McPherson earned her Doctorate of Dental Medicine from the Medical University of South Carolina’s College of Dental Medicine. She is an…

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Dr. Luke E. Severance

Dr. Luke E. Severance

Dr. Luke E. Severance believes dentistry goes far beyond just treating teeth – it’s about building lasting relationships and making a genuine difference in the lives of his patients. Dr. Severance was raised in Florence, South Carolina and graduated with summa cum laude from the University of South Carolina. He went on to receive his…

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538 Savannah Hwy
Charleston, SC 29407

Phone: (843) 507-5481
FAX: (843) 577-4653

Opening Hours

Monday - Thursday 8am - 5pm
Lunch break: 1pm - 2pm

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