Growing up, it’s always fun to rib dad about the trials of age… a little less hair or a little larger belt. He has always been that superman, able to do anything and always has all the answers… Dad or Pop or Daddy or whatever you get to call him; we have those special memories that will always stay with us. For a lot of people, it is Dad’s snoring that tops the list! Unfortunately, that’s not just a noisy night of sleep, and in many cases, it’s a warning bell that something needs to be done!
There are some solid research studies into sleep and airway and snoring, and what we now know is that snoring is often a sign of a clear and present danger and ignoring it could be a matter of life and death! Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a silent killer that most of us miss because the warning signs are largely silent and happen when we sleep, but one of the most obvious signs is snoring. The actual numbers show that about 50% of people who snore are also dealing with OSA, which means that half of snorers are simply loud sleepers. However, when you dig a little deeper, the reality is that of loud snorers, well over 90% are dealing with some level of OSA and if snoring wakes up someone else, it is loud snoring.
The fist issue with Obstructive Sleep Apnea is that it interferes with getting into the deeper and more restorative stages of sleep and actually prevents your body from healing overnight like it is supposed to. This is why OSA is often the root cause of heart disease or diabetes or weight management problems, and if not addressed, will make people sicker faster as time goes on.
Some common signs that Dad may have OSA includes things like being more than 20 pounds overweight, neck size of 17 inches or greater, having dental wear/crowding/deep bite, or being on more than one medication for blood pressure. In fact, there are dozens of other red flags that should be screened for at every routine dental visit and have been a part of our screenings at Aesthetic Dentistry of Georgetown for 15+ years. OSA is a silent killer and one of the firsts hints that there is an issue is snoring at night.
Of course, this isn’t limited to just dad. Mom and the kids shouldn’t snore either and if their snoring wakes up anyone else, then there’s a very good chance that there is much more going on than a bad night of sleep. If anyone in your family routinely snores loudly enough to wake themselves or someone else in the family, don’t just poke fun at the. Point them toward some help because odds are they are dealing with Obstructive Sleep Apnea and the sooner they get healthy, the more memories you get to share!
If you or someone in your home is snoring loudly enough that it wakes other people up, give us a call and let’s talk about the benefits of managing the snoring or Obstructive Sleep Apnea!