Sleep Apnea & Your Mental Health in Waterford, MI

Treating Sleep Apnea Can Improve Mental Health

Many patients are unaware of the connection between mental health and a good night’s rest. At Oakland Family Dental, our Waterford, MI, dentist Dr. Amanda Sheehan educates her patients of the effects sleep apnea has on your mental health. She is committed to improving the lives of patients in Waterford, Shelby, Bloomfield Hills, and Rochester by providing quality sleep apnea care. 

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a disorder characterized by recurrent pauses in breathing during sleep. These pauses in breathing, called apneas, can last anywhere from a few seconds to several minutes and can occur several times an hour. There’s also evidence to suggest that sleep apnea can have a negative impact on mental health. Patients suffering from sleep apnea can experience symptoms such as irritability, mood changes, and difficulty concentrating

woman sleeping
man laying in bed

The Cognitive Effects of Sleep Deprivation

Lack of sleep causes the brain to function slower than it normally would if you were getting a full night’s rest. Sleep deprivation can lead to a number of problems, including:

Foggy Memory

Sleep helps to consolidate memories and process new information. Without enough sleep, it can be harder to learn new things and remember important details. Regardless of age, memory loss can affect anyone who isn’t getting a sufficient amount of sleep. 

Difficulty Concentrating

Sleep deprivation can make it hard to focus and pay attention, which can make it difficult to perform tasks that require concentration and decision-making skills. When you have a full night’s rest, your brain has time to reset and prepare for the next day. 

Increased Risk of Mistakes

Lack of sleep can affect your coordination and reaction time, making you more likely to make mistakes. You’re more likely to lose concentration when you’re sleep deprived, resulting in mistakes at work, school, or home 

Mood Swings

A lack of sleep can also affect your mood, leading to irritability, anxiety, and even depression. Your peers may notice a difference in your personality and actions throughout the day. It can also worsen existing mental health conditions. 

Improve Your Mental Health With Sleep Apnea Treatment

Our Waterford dentist offers a variety of sleep apnea treatments to help you improve your mental health:

  • Oral appliance therapy
  • Laser therapy
  • Positional therapy
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Maxillomandibular advancement surgery
  • Nasal surgery

Frequently Asked Questions

What causes sleep apnea?

Several factors can cause sleep apnea, including obesity, age, family history, and smoking. Sleep apnea can also be caused by structural abnormalities in the airway, such as a small jaw or large tonsils. Consult with a sleep dentist to learn the root cause of your sleep apnea and how to best treat it.

Can sleep apnea cause anxiety and depression?

There’s evidence to suggest that sleep apnea may be connected with an increased risk of developing anxiety and depression. The symptoms of sleep apnea, such as difficulty sleeping and feeling tired during the day, can also contribute to feelings of anxiety and depression. You may also experience worsened symptoms of existing conditions. 

How is sleep apnea diagnosed?

Sleep apnea is diagnosed by a sleep specialist or dentist, who will review the patient’s medical history, conduct a physical exam, and may order a sleep study. A sleep study is a test that measures brain activity, eye movement, and other bodily functions during sleep. Your sleep specialist will go over the results of your sleep test to determine the best solution for your sleep apnea symptoms.

Schedule an Appointment With Dr. Sheehan

Sleep apnea is a serious disorder and can cause additional health issues if left untreated. No one should suffer from sleep deprivation and declining mental health, that’s why our team is ready to completely transform your quality of sleep. Don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with Dr. Sheehan by giving us a call at (248) 674-0384 or request an appointment online.