At The Parkway Dentist Fort Worth, we want to eliminate some of the misconceptions about sleep apnea. We’re using this blog post to discuss three of them.
First, a broad definition: sleep apnea is a condition in which you stop and restart breathing as you sleep. It can happen dozens of times overnight.
1. Sleep apnea is caused by being heavy.
Being overweight is one of the risk factors for developing sleep apnea, but there are others.
With overweight people, the fatty tissue in the back of the throat can obstruct breathing as the muscles relax during sleep. Sleep apnea becomes more prevalent as one’s weight increases, but even slender people can have sleep apnea.
2. If you snore, you have sleep apnea.
Snoring is linked to sleep apnea, but snoring in and of itself does not mean you have it. Snoring has been linked to other conditions like Type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart failure and hypertension.
If you snore, consider it a health alert.
3. If you sleep poorly, you can sleep longer and make up for it.
Studies show that both undersleeping and oversleeping negatively impacts cognitive ability, when compared to those receiving eight hours of sleep. Oversleeping might be as harmful as undersleeping.
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