Sleeplessness or fatigued are common conditions that affect millions of lives. These two disorders can significantly affect the quality of your life. The most common sleeping disorder is sleep apnea. Besides, the condition TMJ may also contribute to make sleep apnea worse.
If you are experiencing sleep apnea and TMJ at the same time, these conditions can affect your physical health, mental well-being, and quality of life. Let’s explore the role of sleep apnea and TMJ in your overall well-being.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which your breathing stops during sleep. When the airway collapses or gets obstructed, it leads to disrupted sleep patterns and decreased oxygen intake.
What is TMJ?
TMJ, or temporomandibular joint is the joint that connects your jaw to your skull. TMJ disorder results in pain and movement issues in this joint and surrounding muscles. These affect jaw movement and overall oral health.
Are sleep apnea and TMJ connected?
Muscle tension from TMJ dysfunction can impact the upper airway, and as a result you might experience sleep apnea.
Both conditions cause sleep disruptions individually, and TMJ discomfort can worsen sleep apnea. Hence, when you address one condition it may positively treat the other. It is best to consult specialists to find effective treatment strategies for improved sleep and reduced TMJ discomfort.
How do sleep apnea and TMJ affect your well-being?
Sleep apnea decreases oxygen in the body as a result you feel chronic fatigue and daytime sleepiness. When left untreated, sleep apnea may also elevate the risk of cardiovascular problems. It hinders your overall physical and mental health. On the other hand, the discomfort caused by TMJ interferes with multiple daily activities. For instance, discomfort in the jaw can cause eating and speaking difficulties. It potentially generates neck pain and headaches. The pain and discomfort may also affect your sleep quality. As a result, TMJ decreases your overall quality of life.
How to treat sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea can be treated with some lifestyle changes, like quitting alcohol, sedatives and weight loss. For a constant airflow, some might also find CPAP (constant positive airway pressure) device useful. There are various types of custom-made oral appliances available for effective treatment. As a last resort, surgery can also be recommended.
How to treat TMJ?
Experts recommended splints or mouthguards to alleviate jaw pain and prevent teeth grinding. You might also need orthodontist treatment to adjust the bite. Apart from this physical therapy and surgical interventions are useful in the treatment of TMJ.
When sleep apnea and TMJ are co-occurring, these disorders may significantly decrease your quality of life. So it is important to seek timely treatment. Schedule an appointment at New York TMJ & Orofacial Pain, it is a TMJ learning center with multiple offices in Manhattan, Long Island and Westchester.