Protect You Mind With Quality Sleep
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) interrupts the body’s natural sleep cycle, waking people up repeatedly throughout the night due to the lack of oxygen. Sleep apnea can lead to other serious health conditions, like heart problems and type 2 diabetes, but it’s also been linked to a variety of mental health issues.
According to Harvard Medical School, there is a close connection between sleep and mental health. What makes matters even more complex is that people who suffer from mental health issues are more likely to suffer from sleep disorders like sleep apnea and insomnia. Unfortunately, this makes it easy to receive a misdiagnosis which is why Dr. Stern highly recommends getting a sleep study done so that you receive the right treatment you need. Untreated sleep apnea can have a detrimental impact on your mental health but our sleep dentist can help patients across Eastlake, Kirtland, and Wickliffe, OH with effective treatment.
Mental Health Conditions Connected to Sleep Apnea
Suffering from two different medical conditions at the same time can worsen both conditions. This is called comorbidity, and sleep apnea is comorbid with several mental health issues. Some of these include:
- Depression: Many patients who suffer from depression also experience sleep problems and vice versa. If sleep apnea is aggravating your depression, Dr. Stern can provide treatment that offers relief for both conditions.
- Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder: Patients with schizophrenia tend to sleep excessively, especially during the daytime. Additionally, the drugs used to treat both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder often cause drowsiness.
- Anxiety & PTSD: More than half of patients with generalized anxiety disorder suffer from sleeping issues. Sleep apnea is also common among veterans with PTSD.
Sleep Apnea’s Effects On The Brain
During obstructive sleep apnea, the airflow is cut off by the relaxed tissues of the mouth and throat. Because of this, your brain doesn’t receive enough oxygen and as a result, jolts you awake so that you can breathe. This can happen repeatedly throughout the night, even if you don’t remember or ever fully awaken.
Instead of spending time repairing and restoring your body as you sleep, your brain is more focused on keeping you breathing. The continued lack of oxygen affects not only your brain but also your organs and bodily systems. As a result, cognitive impairment and other serious issues can occur.
Losing necessary hours of sleep affects your body’s ability to perform at its peak. Untreated sleep apnea can impact your ability to concentrate on simple everyday tasks or process new information. It can also affect your work performance.
During your REM sleep cycle, your brain releases emotion-regulating chemicals that help you stay calm throughout the day. Sleep deprivation causes a chemical imbalance in your brain, making it difficult to control your emotions.
Lack of sleep can impair your ability to recollect past memories, as well as present and future events. Since the brain isn’t able to process information properly, it’s likely that you’ll struggle to remember important dates, previous conversations, and more.
Finding Effective Sleep Apnea Treatment
Many patients have found that CPAP alternatives have helped improve both their sleep apnea and their mental health. In addition to professional treatment with Dr. Stern, changing certain lifestyle habits such as incorporating an exercise routine into your daily life and eating well can help improve your sleep quality.
Dr. Stern offers custom oral appliances as a solution to sleep apnea. With an oral appliance, you’ll receive a discreet, quiet, and comfortable solution to help boost your sleep quality and eliminate your sleep apnea symptoms.
Snoring and CPAP Solutions LLC
Snoring and CPAP Solutions LLC is committed to helping patients with sleep disorders such as snoring and sleep apnea that interferes with their day to day life. Dr. Stern is a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine and holds more than 2 decades of experience in the field.
Dr. Michael Stern
Frequently Asked Questions
The general consensus is that there’s a link between sleep apnea and ADHD and that it can contribute to the development of ADHD symptoms. However, it’s not entirely clear that sleep apnea directly causes ADHD. Sleep apnea can exacerbate symptoms and oftentimes, due to their similar symptoms, sleep apnea can be misdiagnosed as ADHD.
While there is a connection between sleep apnea and stress, how it affects the patients can vary. However, it is not uncommon for patients who suffer from stress-related disorders such as anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to also suffer from sleep apnea. Effectively managing stress while addressing your sleep apnea, can help you get the sleep you deserve.