How are you breathing at night? - by Dr Lindsay J Singham
7th October 2021
Did you know that how you breathe at night time can significantly effect your sleep quality, health and wellbeing?
- Do you snore?
- Do you grind or clench your teeth?
- Do you wake up with a dry mouth or get dry lips during the day?
- Do you wake up with a headache or get headaches developing during the day?
- Do you need to get up for the bathroom during the night?
- Do you wake up unrefreshed or get tired during the day?
- Do you have a ‘foggy brain’ or problems remembering things?
- Do you get irritated at background noises…..
If you or a loved one have answered yes to any of these then please read on.
Most people are completely unaware of what happens at night time but have symptoms as above that may suggest all is not right during the night.
Some people breathe through their mouth, snore, or even stop breathing (sleep apnoea) during the night and know nothing about it.
This can lead to the type and amount of sleep you are getting being altered and put undue stress on your body.
This is because when the body isn’t getting enough oxygen it will enter a ‘panic state’ or ‘flight of fight response’. You body will then disturb you to get you to breathe again or move and hence bump you from one sleep phase to another. This results in fragmented sleep.
The body will also often stay in this panic state which puts extra strain on the whole body and lead to any of the following :- increased cholesterol levels increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer weight gain fertility issues erectile dysfunction irritability increased risk of accidents
We all need adequate sleep of the right types to repair our bodies, condense our memories, and to grow as we should.
Things that might effect how you breathe are face shape, jaw position, anatomy of your throat and nose space, tongue ties, if you have had teeth removed for braces, allergies, large tonsils or adenoids or carrying extra body weight.
Children can also have problems with how they breathe at night time. If their sleep is disturbed by sleep apnoea or sleep disordered breathing they can have poor growth, behavioural issues and poor attention, and reduced brain development. Reflux can also have the same result and often goes undiagnosed.
For these reasons it is especially important to make sure children are breathing well during the night and not snoring or having any kind of noisy breathing.
At Absolutely Dental we are trained to look for the signs of sleep disordered breathing and Dr Lindsay has had considerable training in the area of sleep and sleep disorders breathing and apnoea, its diagnosis and treatment.
If we see signs there might be a problem or your history suggests it we may recommend getting a sleep study done.
We are fortunate to have our own type II sleep testing machine that can be used in the comfort of your own home. The costs of this test is often covered by Medicare.
Results are scored by a sleep technician and reported by a sleep physician. From this we can make recommendations as to how to improve things to get you having a better night’s sleep and a healthier, happier future.
If you have answered yes to any of the questions at the beginning then please make an appointment to discuss possible issues that could be effecting your health.
Call us on 4723 8100