611 University Dr State College, PA 16801
State College Dental Sleep Medicine
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Sleep Medicine Diplomate

What is Sleep Apnea? – State College, PA

Discover the Causes of Sleep Apnea

Do you feel tired throughout the day despite sleeping all night? It may not be the result of a bad mattress. In fact, you might be suffering from sleep apnea in State College. The common sleep disorder causes you to stop breathing frequently throughout the night. Not only does this make you lose sleep, but it can also impact your health and your quality of life. Dr. Donald M. Marks specializes in sleep medicine. He can help you get the rest you need and breathe easier with a customized treatment plan.

What is Sleep Apnea?

image of upper airway

Sleep apnea is one of the leading sleep disorders around the world. It causes you to stop breathing frequently throughout the night with each event lasting for potentially longer than one minute. It is most often the result of an obstruction in the airway; however, there are other factors that can lead to it as well.

No matter the cause, it increases your risk of sleep deprivation, mood swings, memory loss, and other factors that can influence your quality of life from lack of sleep. The complications do not stop there. The frequent drop in oxygen puts a strain on your cardiovascular system, increasing your risk of heart attack and stroke.

Dr. Marks will find the cause of your sleep disorder to create a personalized treatment plan to prevent any future complications.

Types of Sleep Apnea

man snoring next to woman

Not all types of sleep apnea are the same. In fact, there are 3 types:

  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea: This is the most common type that occurs when the soft tissue in the mouth and throat collapse to block the airway. It is estimated at least 22 million Americans have a form of it, but it is believed at least 80% of people who have the disorder are not diagnosed.
  • Central Sleep Apnea: This type is a little rarer, and it is usually the result of another underlying factor, like a stroke. It occurs when the brain does not signal the body to breathe correctly. It can be especially dangerous and potentially deadly when left untreated.
  • Complex Sleep Apnea: This is a combination of the two previous types, which can be treated using the same methods.

Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea

upper airway

It is easy for people to overlook the symptoms of sleep apnea because they are often thought to be related to another issue, like stress or allergies. Not to mention, several of the signs occur while you are sleeping. Although you may not realize it is happening, you may experience warning signs of sleep apnea elsewhere in your life. Common signs include:

  • Loud, chronic snoring
  • Waking often choking or gasping for air
  • Waking with a sore throat
  • Waking with a headache
  • Severe daytime fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating or short-term memory loss
  • Changes in mood or behavior

Treating Sleep Apnea

Dr. Marks provides treatment for obstructive sleep apnea in State College. Besides a traditional CPAP, you can breathe easier with a custom-made oral appliance. If you are ready to get the rest you need, contact our office today to schedule your consultation.

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