Snoring isn’t just snoring. It’s one of the most recognizable signs of sleep apnea. But sleep apnea isn’t just sleep apnea, either. It’s a warning sign that problems may be developing with your heart. Here are three reasons to tell your doctor and your dentist if you snore.

1. Sleep apnea stresses your heart.

Sleep apnea is a condition that makes it difficult to breathe deeply when you’re sleeping. When laying down, people with this condition often struggle to take in sufficient amounts of oxygen because of pressure on the airway. This increases the nightly stress your heart experiences.

Sleep apnea also causes long-term health difficulties. When you have this condition, your body wakes up several times throughout the night because your brain receives an alert of low oxygen levels. This carries over into long-term sleep loss, memory problems, and poor health.

2. Many causes of snoring and sleep apnea cause heart disease.

Sleep apnea doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Sometimes, the condition is caused by having a large chin or tongue. For the majority of people with the condition, however, obesity or age is one of the primary factors behind snoring. So if you snore or regularly suffer from the symptoms of sleep apnea, you are a likely candidate for high blood pressure and pulmonary hypertension, too.

3. Dry mouth can increase the risk of periodontal disease.

In order to increase their air intake, people with sleep apnea often switch to breathing through their mouth while asleep. But this can dry out their mouth night after night. This creates the ideal environment for bacterial growth, tooth decay, and, eventually, gum disease.

Every year, there’s more and more evidence linking your mouth’s health to your cardiovascular system and general health. So don’t skip your six-month dental appointment. Contact Exquisite Smiles here to schedule a time.