Elite Dental of Staten Island

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Is there a link between sleep apnea and depression?

Obstructive sleep apnea can lead to depression.

Sleep apnea is serious condition and can lead to a number of uncomfortable symptoms and health concerns. Many people who suffer from sleep apnea struggle with chronic headaches, daytime fatigue and mood-related problems. Research shows that sleep apnea can have an impact on one’s mental health and may even be a contributing factor to depression. Read on to find out more about the connection between sleep apnea and depression and what you can do if you are struggling with one or both of these conditions…

What is the connection?

There is a strong connection between sleep and mood, and many people who suffer from a lack of sleep also struggle with depression. In some cases, individuals experience sleep deprivation before depression, but it is also possible to experience symptoms of both issues at the same time. In fact, both sleep deprivation and depression increase one’s risk of developing either condition.

Among the symptoms of sleep apnea is insomnia, which has a strong correlation to mental health issues like depression and anxiety. According to research, a large number of individuals who have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea also present with symptoms of depression.

What are the symptoms of the conditions?

In many cases, the symptoms of depression and sleep apnea intersect. For this reason, an individual may not know that they are suffering from one of the conditions if they have been diagnosed with the other, especially because depression is so often a symptom of sleep apnea.

Some of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea include snoring; pauses in breathing when sleeping; daytime sleepiness; headaches (especially upon waking in the morning); irritability; and insomnia.

Some of the symptoms of depression include feelings of sadness or hopelessness; irritability; fatigue; difficulties concentrating; and headaches.

If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, we recommend that you begin by determining whether or not you have sleep apnea because it could be a contributing factor for depression. If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, the issue can be treated and you may experience relief from the symptoms of depression as well. If your healthcare practitioner determines that you don’t have sleep apnea, they will refer you to a professional who can help to address your depression.

How can the conditions be managed?

In many cases, treatments for sleep apnea help to alleviate the symptoms of depression. For this reason, it is important that you are properly diagnosed and offered an appropriate treatment.

Besides medical treatment, there are a few lifestyle changes that you can make, which can help to manage both sleep apnea and depression. This includes regular exercise, which can reduce some of the symptoms of depression and result in weight loss — weight loss can sometimes ease sleep apnea. It is also helpful to avoid alcohol, sleeping pills and sedatives.

How can we help?

At Elite Dental of Staten Island, we specialize in airway treatment and offer a range of treatment options for patients who suffer from sleep apnea. As part of our offering, we provide myofunctional therapy, sleep appliances, sleep position training, oral appliance therapy, continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) and surgery. If you would like to find out more about the range of airway treatments that we provide, please have a look here.

We also offer a number of solutions for children’s airway concerns. We encourage our patients to bring their children in for regular wellness check-ups, so that we can identify and resolve any issues at an early stage.

If you would like to find out more about children’s airway treatment at Elite Dental of Staten Island, please have a look here.  

To arrange a consultation, please get in touch with us here or give us a call on (717) 563 6985. We look forward to welcoming you to our practice and helping you enjoy overall wellness.