At our Austin dental office, we always go out of our way to make sure your mouth and your body are as healthy as possible – even it goes beyond simply treating or cleaning your teeth. Sometimes patients are concerned about how snoring might be affecting their smile, so we thought we’d dedicate this blog to looking at how snoring can be damaging to both your oral and overall health.
What Should I Know About Snoring?
If snoring is causing problems in your life (both for you and your bed partner), maybe it’s time to consider learning more about sleep apnea. Snoring is not only annoying but it also poses dangers to both your teeth and the rest of your body.
Here are signs and symptoms that your loud snoring could be related to sleep apnea:
- Sudden awakenings causing you to restart breathing
- Waking up in a sweat
- Frequent silences throughout the night when you stop breathing
- Choking or gasping for air
- Daytime sleepiness
- Falling asleep at unwanted times
If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to talk to your Austin dentist. The side effects of snoring can cause issues for your oral health and we’ll want to monitor you so we can best protect your teeth.
Are My Teeth Suffering Because of My Snoring?
Snoring or breathing with your mouth open during sleep can cause you to develop something called dry mouth. This can cause problems for your smile that include:
- The decreased ability to wash away particles left over after meals
- Having enough saliva to keep teeth free from harmful acids and plaque build-up
- An increased risk for sores, infections, and halitosis (bad breath)
- An increased risk for breakdown of your tooth enamel
Does Snoring Mean I Have Sleep Apnea?
The American Sleep Apnea Association estimates nearly 90 million Americans are snoring away every night while thinking they’re enjoying a deep, healthy rest. Sometimes snoring has nothing to do with sleep apnea. This is generally true for about 45 million of the 90 million people who saw logs in their sleep each night. But the others can be suffering from sleep apnea.
Who’s at Risk for Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition that knows no limits when it comes to age, race, or ethnic background – everyone is at risk. That’s why it’s so important to determine if your snoring issues are sleep apnea related or not. The American Dental Association says your sleep apnea risk is increased if you’re:
- Older than 40
- Predisposed to snoring in your family medical history
- Struggling with a deviated septum, sinus conditions, or allergies
If snoring has been causing issues with you, your bed partner, or even your family, please don’t hesitate to call our dental office in Austin. We can take a look at your teeth to make sure there are no immediate issues with your smile that need to be addressed and discuss what steps you can take to treat your sleep apnea so you can avoid future health problems such as deteriorating teeth, diabetes, depression, heart disease, and high blood pressure.