825 S Waukegan Rd, Lake Forest, IL 60045

signs of sleep apnea

5 Unsuspecting Ways to Tell you Might have Sleep Apnea


Sleep apnea affects millions of people in the U.S. and can occur in just about anyone. It’s known as the silent killer because many people have the disorder and don’t even know it! The problem is that many sleep apnea symptoms can mimic other issues or can even be chalked up to stress and aging. But today on the blog, our Lake Forest sleep apnea dentists share five unsuspecting ways to tell that you might have sleep apnea so that you can seek treatment right away and prevent devastating health consequences.

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is a sleep-breathing disorder in which soft tissue blocks the airway, impeding airflow and lowering blood oxygenation levels. Not only does untreated sleep apnea starve the body of sufficient oxygen, but the condition also causes frequent awakenings, disrupting the deep sleep cycle necessary for good health. So, below are some of the most common ways to tell that you could have sleep apnea.

  1. You snore while sleeping

Snoring is by far the most common symptom of sleep apnea, but it’s not the only one. And most snorers aren’t even aware that they snore unless their sleep partner or roommate tells them. Therefore, if you aren’t sure that you snore, check out the other symptoms associated with sleep apnea. And if you already know that you’re a snorer, talk to your sleep apnea dentist right away if you experience the below symptoms.

  1. You wake up with a sore throat or dry mouth most days

This could indicate that you breathe with your mouth open while sleeping. Unless you’re battling a cold or occasional congestion, waking with a dry mouth or sore throat could be a symptom of sleep apnea. Therefore, if you experience this often, schedule a sleep apnea screening in Lake Forest.

  1. You have headaches when you wake up

Frequently waking with headaches day after day makes it difficult to move forward with daily tasks. Eventually, you may find yourself relying on pain relievers to get through the mornings. However, frequent headaches upon waking could be a sign of sleep apnea because you’re sleep deprived and your body lacks sufficient oxygen.

  1. You’re gaining weight or struggling to lose weight

Gaining weight or struggling to lose weight can be a downer when you’re eating right and getting enough movement and exercise daily. However, if this sounds like you or you aren’t seeing gains at the gym like you expected, sleep apnea could be to blame. Inadequate sleep and low oxygen levels in the blood could disrupt your hormones and lead to weight issues. Therefore, before you throw in the towel on your weight loss journey, consult with a sleep apnea dentist for an airway evaluation to determine if sleep apnea is to blame.

  1. You have acid reflux

Acid reflux is common among many adults and is a condition in which stomach bile flows back up into the esophagus. It burns, is uncomfortable, and produces a putrid taste in the mouth. Acid reflux isn’t so much as a symptom of sleep apnea as it is a cause of sleep apnea. Soft tissue and throat muscles contract during bouts of acid reflux, which tend to occur when lying down or sleeping. Therefore, as a result, the soft tissue movements could restrict or block the airway, resulting in snoring or obstructive sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea screening in Lake Bluff and Lake Forest

It’s imperative to treat sleep apnea or you could be putting your health at risk. Sleep apnea is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, insulin resistance, and memory loss. Therefore, if you experience any of these symptoms we discussed today, please schedule a sleep apnea screening at Lake Forest Smiles by calling (847) 234-4800. Together, we can help you manage your condition with a simple oral appliance that is worn while sleeping. You’ll be amazed at the relief you experience without needing a CPAP machine!

Scroll to Top