Accident Prone? Could Be Your Sleep

Friday, April 8th, 2016, 5:54 pm

Are you accident prone? Some people just seem to trip, run into walls, bang their legs on the desk corner and get fingers stuck in drawers more often than the rest of us. The reason you might be accident prone could be the quality of your sleep!

A recent study from Canada found that patients with poor sleep quality due to sleep apnea were three times more likely to suffer injuries that were potentially related to tiredness. “Study author Dr. Najib T. Ayas stated “People with sleep apnea have decreased cognitive function, vigilance, attention, and motor function. And we know from previous studies that individuals with untreated sleep apnea are at increased risk of motor vehicle crashes.”

The research looked at a group of patients who were evaluated at the University of British Columbia Hospital Sleep Disorder Laboratory to be evaluated for sleep apnea. The researchers compared injury claims of those who were diagnosed with sleep apnea versus those of patients who were note diagnosed with the condition.

It is estimated that up to 25% of adults between 30 and 70 may be affected by sleep apnea which causes stoppages of breathing during sleep. The vast majority of these patients have no idea that they have a sleep breathing disorder — they just know that they wake up feeling unrefreshed and experience excessive daytime sleepiness. Signs of sleep apnea include loud snoring, gasping during sleep, large neck size, weight gain and increase in blood pressure. Left untreated, obstructive sleep apnea has been linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, headache, depression, erectile dysfunction and increased risk of accident.

CPAP is usually the first treatment suggested for sleep apnea but most patients have difficulty sleeping with the masks and hoses. Using an oral appliance to treat sleep apnea has been proven highly effective and the majority of patients find the oral appliance comfortable and easy to use. Only a physician can diagnose obstructive sleep apnea, and only a dentist can create a custom oral appliance to treat the disorder.

Find out if you are a candidate for oral appliance therapy for sleep apnea by contacting Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-391-8777 to schedule your next visit.

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Category: Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), CPAP device, sleep apnea

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