Treatment of sleep apnea linked to lowered blood pressure

Recent sleep apnea studies have found that the diligent use of a CPAP machine for the treatment of sleep apnea is linked to a modest decrease in blood pressure. The studies are really only preliminary, but bring a lot of interesting questions and possibilities to light. The researchers are discussing performing the study using other sleep apnea treatments, including oral appliances, to see if they find the same results, or if this is just a result of the CPAP. It is also possible that the reduced blood pressure is not linked to the treatment at all, but instead shows that people who are diligent about using their CPAP are also making other positive lifestyle choices that end up reducing their blood pressure. Those who struggle with their blood pressure and/or sleep apnea should pay close attention as new studies emerge, and we will be sure to keep you posted via our blog.

Sleep apnea is known to cause other more serious health concerns. Apnea actually reduces the amount of oxygen that reaches the brain and body throughout the night–it’s not just snoring! This can result in increased risk of heart attack and stroke, as well as adds stress and fatigue to the body throughout the day. Sleep apnea really affects so many facets of someone’s life–as well as their spouse’s. There are several treatment options in addition to the CPAP machine, which users often find is uncomfortable to wear throughout the night, especially if they tend to be a stomach sleeper. The CPAP mask can also irritate the skin. CPAP treatment is very successful when used 100 percent of the time, however most users only wear it an average of four hours a night. If you fall into that category, or have yet to select a treatment for sleep apnea, also look into an oral appliance, which is designed to open your airway.

If you are suffering from sleep apnea, it is important to seek proper treatment, and All Smiles Care can help–give us a call at 410-876-2096 or email at [email protected] for information.

About the author

A practicing dentist since 1982, Dr. Gary Imm, provides advanced cosmetic dentistry, including smile makeovers, sedation, implant and TMJ services. He is committed to progressive, extraordinary care for his guests. All Smiles Dental Care trains at least 300 hours each year at such prestigious centers as the Las Vegas Institute of Advanced Dentistry. (LVI)

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