Causes of Sleep Apnea

Fresno Dentist Serving Madera, Clovis, Visalia, Tulare & Nearby Areas in California

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a result of the over relaxation of muscles that support the soft palate, uvula, tongue, tonsils, and throat. The relaxation of these muscles temporarily blocks proper airflow, which quickly wakes you up to choke and gasp for air. The waking process is incredibly fast and, occurring during sleep, often remains unnoticed by those who suffer from OSA.

You may begin to suspect you have OSA if you experience symptoms such as daytime sleepiness, frequent morning headaches, poor concentration, or irritability. Loved ones may also inform you of chronic snoring, tossing and turning, or periods of breath cessation during your sleep.

If you notice any of these symptoms or have been diagnosed with OSA, Fresno sleep apnea dentist Dr. Greg Miyake may be able to help treat your condition and restore a good night’s sleep.

Risk Factors for OSA

OSA is caused by a narrowing of the airways. This may be the result of genetic factors such as a naturally narrow throat or a large neck circumference. OSA is more common in men over the age of 60, particularly those with a family history of the disorder. Black males are more likely to develop OSA before the age of 35.

In addition to genetic factors, OSA may be brought about by:

  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • The use of tranquilizers, sleeping aids, or narcotics
  • Nasal congestion

If you have any of these risk factors and are suffering from the symptoms of OSA, your health may be at risk. OSA is linked to an increased risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, cognitive and emotional problems, and a host of other issues.

Fortunately, most cases of OSA can be easily treated with a dental device that keeps your airways open during sleep. Dr. Miyake can discuss this with you in detail during your sleep apnea consultation.

If you are suffering from sleep apnea in the Fresno, Clovis, or Madera areas of California, please contact Gregory G. Miyake, DDS to schedule an initial consultation today.