Different Types of Sleep Apnea

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Dental health issues can be puzzling for people who follow a strict oral hygiene regimen. Though it's not always thought to be an oral health concern, sleep apnea could be the culprit. Most patients who suffer from sleep apnea clench their jaws or grind their teeth. This exerts tremendous force on enamel and may damage it. Oral pathology in Plantation, FL, will look at your teeth to find signs of damage and refer you to a specialist. After several tests, your doctor will give you a diagnosis and treatment for your unique case. The tests will also determine which of the three sleep apnea variants you may be suffering from.

illustration of sleep apnea and oral pathology in plantation fl

What Are the Three Types of Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Obstructive sleep apnea is a temporary pause in breathing caused by a blockage in the person’s upper respiratory tract. The patient stops breathing, or their breathing becomes shallow, as the chest works harder to get air into the lungs. The blockage usually clears after a few seconds, and the sleeper restarts breathing with a jerk or a snort. People who suffer from OSA may also exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Dehydration and headaches
  • Memory and concentration problems
  • Hypertension

Central Sleep Apnea (CSA)

Unlike OSA, central sleep apnea does not involve any airway blockage. Instead, this condition is linked more to your central nervous system. Your brain sends signals that tell the chest muscles to inhale and exhale as it does with all body actions. In this case, the muscles’ control systems fail to inhale after the last exhalation. In other words, you stop breathing for a few seconds or more. Like OSA, breathing typically restarts with a violent jerk or gasp. The patient then breathes rapidly to expel excess carbon dioxide and increase oxygen intake. This type of apnea may also be a symptom of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, kidney ailments, or lung disease. People who have suffered a stroke or have a heart failure history may also experience CSA.

Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome (CompSAS)

Also known as CompSAS, this disorder involves an onset of central sleep apnea after recovery from OSA. Complex sleep apnea usually affects patients who undergo continuous positive airway pressure for their OSA symptoms. However, it may also manifest in people not receiving CPAP therapy. Complex sleep apnea syndrome exhibits symptoms similar to OSA, making it difficult to accurately diagnose and treat. Some treatments for OSA, like CPAP, are known for worsening the central sleep apnea that sets in afterwards.

sleep apnea and oral pathology in plantation fl

Why Seek Out Oral Pathology in Plantation, FL?

Oral pathology determines whether or not your existing oral hygiene problems are symptoms of severe diseases. For example, it can distinguish if your broken tooth is caused by sleep apnea or other disorders like an affliction of the salivary gland or even oral cancer. If you have more questions about oral pathology in Plantation, FL, get in touch with us for an appointment, and we’ll help you out.