Signs & Risks

Drowsy After a Full Night’s Sleep?
It May Be Sleep Apnea

Waking up gasping or short of breath is a common symptom of sleep apnea, but many people living with this chronic condition do not know they have it. Sleep apnea can be difficult to diagnose, as the condition only occurs while you sleep. People often think they are just aging and tired, when the truth is far more sinister. Without treatment, the condition can lead to fatigue, high blood pressure, heart disease, a higher risk of stroke, and motor vehicle accidents, putting overall health at risk. If you experience any symptoms of sleep apnea, it is time to seek potentially life-saving treatment.

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a chronic condition that causes the airway to collapse during sleep. Patients with sleep apnea often find themselves waking up short of breath, gasping or choking. These lapses in breath can occur more than 30 times an hour, disrupting sleep and causing the person to feel drowsy the next day.

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

  • Feeling Drowsy During the Day
  • Difficulty Staying Asleep/Insomnia
  • Waking Up Gasping or Short of Breath
  • Consistent Snoring
  • Headaches and Fatigue Throughout the Day

Sleep Apnea Risk Factors

  • Depression
  • Heart and Liver Concerns
  • Risk of Stroke
  • Higher Blood Pressure

Sleep Apnea Treatment

The most common treatment for sleep apnea is a CPAP machine, but many patients experience intolerance to this device and search for other options. We offer mandibular sleep appliances as a treatment alternative. These oral appliances keep the airway open while you sleep by moving the lower jaw forward to prevent the obstruction that causes breathing to stop.

Improve Breathing with Holistic Orthodontics


Dr. Rebecca Orsini is also a provider for HealthyStart a minimally invasive sleep-disordered breathing treatment for children. HealthyStart™ utilizes a series of custom oral appliances to correct oral habits in children and help naturally guide their lower jaws and erupting adult teeth into the proper position. Correctly aligned and occluded teeth improve airways and breathing, helping to prevent or correct symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing. If your child suffers from bedwetting, restless sleep or nightmares, chronic allergies, daytime fatigue, or behavioral issues please schedule a consultation with us today!

Dr. Rebecca Orsini of Empower Dental is a Member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine.

Stop losing sleep to sleep apnea. Schedule your consultation today!

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