Are You Having Trouble Sleeping?
Whether you’re going through your first pregnancy or you’re about to have your fourth child, the ups and downs of this nine-month process can take a toll on your body, health, and emotions. One major change that pregnant women experience is a change in their sleep cycle.
It’s common to suffer from insomnia during your third trimester because your daytime energy is fully controlled by the baby you’re carrying. However, if you or your partner notice sleep troubles early on in your first trimester, it may be a sign of a serious condition such as sleep apnea.
During the first trimester, women’s sleep quality is much higher, which is when they should be sleeping the most. If you’re early in your pregnancy and you’re already experiencing severe daytime fatigue or your partner says you snore and sometimes choke in the middle of the night, it’s best to undergo a sleep study to receive a proper diagnosis.
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea During Pregnancy
Common symptoms of sleep apnea in pregnant women include the following:
- Persistent headaches
- Dry mouth
- Frequent nighttime urination
- Heartburn overnight
- Excessively sleeping during the day
Some of these symptoms may be a result of your pregnancy, and for this reason, many expectant mothers with sleep apnea go undiagnosed. If you find yourself experiencing any of these symptoms, contact our office. Dr. Ralhan will be able to discuss your symptoms with you and explain the next steps.
Sleep Apnea Can Harm You & Your Unborn Baby
If left untreated, sleep apnea is a serious condition that can lead to other major health risks such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and kidney failure. However, sleep apnea doesn’t just affect the sufferer, but it can also affect a pregnant woman’s unborn baby as well.
Major health risks that pregnant woman with sleep apnea may experience include:
- Gestational diabetes – an increased level of glucose in the blood
- Preeclampsia – high blood pressure during pregnancy, sometimes with fluid retention and proteinuria
- Lower blood oxygen levels
- Maternal obesity
- Increased risk of needing a caesarian section
- Pulmonary edema – excess fluid in the lungs
- Increased risk of the newborn needing to be admitted into the neonatal intensive care unit
Before your sleep apnea harms you and your unborn baby, it’s best to seek a proper diagnosis through a sleep study provided by a board-certified sleep physician. Here at our Burlington and Oakville offices, Dr. Ralhan can refer you to a specialist so they can administer a sleep study.
Can lack of sleep hurt my unborn baby?
Poor sleep quality can affect a developing fetus. An insufficient amount of sleep may reduce the amount of growth hormone released, which can lead to development or growth problems for your unborn baby. If you feel your lack of sleep is due to sleep apnea during pregnancy, contact our office by calling (905)-257-3368. Dr. Ralhan can assess your health and recommend a sleep study
Learn About Your Treatment Solutions
Once you have an official sleep apnea diagnosis, your sleep doctor will most likely prescribe you a CPAP machine to relieve your snoring and sleep apnea symptoms. A CPAP mask is worn over your face and continuously blows air through your lungs all night so it can clear the obstruction in your throat that’s generating your sleep issues.
Sleeping comfortably with your new baby bump is already a bit challenging. So when you also have to wear a mask at night, many moms find it nearly impossible to sleep soundly. Luckily, we offer alternatives to CPAP, including an oral appliance.
An oral appliance fits firmly around your teeth. It works by gently moving your jaw forward at night, clearing the obstruction in your throat, and allowing you to sleep comfortably without any interruptions.
Dr. Ralhan may also suggest positional therapy, lifestyle changes, or throat and breathing exercises to help diminish your symptoms. He’ll be happy to explain these easy alternatives to you during your consultation at our Burlington or Oakville, Ontario dental offices.[
How do you deal with sleep apnea during pregnancy?
If you’re suffering from sleep apnea during pregnancy, there are a few ways to help manage it. It’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible and find a solution that works best for you, such as CPAP or oral appliance therapy. In the meantime, here are a few things that may help your sleep apnea:
- Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and nighttime routine
- Limit caffeine intake
- Limit screen time prior to bedtime
- Sleep on your side
Call Today 905-257-3368
Dr. Ralhan Can Assess Your Risks
If you feel you may be suffering from sleep apnea during pregnancy, contact our office. Dr. Ralhan can assess your risks and determine a course of treatment. To schedule an appointment, call our office at (905)-257-3368.