Today, I’m sharing a few paragraphs directly from the book “The 8-hour Sleep Paradox” by Dr. Mark Burhenne.
“We are in denial about how we’re sleeping. Sleep-disordered breathing reduces our productivity and even earnings. In fact, the biochemical restoration that the brain and body go through during sleep is so powerful that brushing off sleep is akin to saying, “Yep, I’m okay with a little brain damage every day for the rest of my life.””
Do you catch that?
“Yep, I’m okay with a little brain damage every day for the rest of my life.”
What a wake up call! I don’t know about you, but I am NOT okay with brain damage.
“Even if you are able to barrel through the short-term effects of sleep deprivation, there’s no escape from the long-term effects. As the damage accumulates, the immune system is weakened and you increase your risk of multiple types of cancer. the body becomes more susceptible to metabolic and endocrine issues, raising the risk of heart disease and diabetes. You accelerate cognitive decline, increasing your chances of dementia and Alzheimer’s. People with untreated sleep disorders have a 20% shorter life expectancy.”
So, how are you sleeping? Are you in denial? Are you okay with a little brain damage every day for the rest of your life?
I’m sure from personal experience you know the difference between a good night’s sleep and a bad night’s sleep.
When was the last time you had a really great night’s sleep? How did you feel when you woke up? Do you wake up without an alarm? With plenty of energy? With a clear head?
If you were to ask your 3 closest friends the last time they had a great night’s sleep with the all the benefits of restful, healing sleep, I’d wager to guess it has either been a really long time or its something they just dream about.
Sleep disordered breathing is the term used to describe the entire spectrum of sleep breathing abnormalities. Sleep disordered breathing ranges from the difficulty sleeping with a stuffy nose all the way to severe sleep apnea.
“Sleep-diordered breathing is an insidious inflammatory disease that affects every system in the body. It’s associated with the biggest killers in the Western world: high blood pressure, strokes, cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and even depression. When sleep breathing is disturbed, so is the essential repair work our bodies do each night to keep us happy, sharp, and disease-free.” (Dr. Mark Burhenne, The 8-hour Sleep Paradox)
So, does sleep determine our destiny? What could you do if you woke each morning with all the benefits of restful healing sleep? Share your thoughts in the comments.
A common question we get is “Why is my dentist asking me about how I sleep?”
The short answer is because we care about your overall health and not just your mouth.
The long answer has a few parts.
1. Dr. Eagar first became interested in treating sleep apnea because his wife would frequently fall asleep at stoplights! Scary, right? She was tested for sleep apnea but her AHI score was under 5 so she was told she was fine and didn’t need treatment. Dr. Eagar wanted to help his wife. He researched the topic and started to attend courses on sleep apnea.
2. Dentists are in a prime position to screen for sleep apnea, in a lot of cases, patients see their dentist more regularly than their primary care doctor.
3. A dentist treats your mouth which is the opening of your airway.
If your dentist isn’t screening you, here are a few questions to ask at your next appointment.
“Do you see signs that I grind my teeth?”
“Do you see signs of lingual erosion of my upper teeth?”
I’m pretty sure that almost everyone has experienced the frustration of trying to fall asleep when someone in the room is snoring. I’ve been amazed at how many stories I’ve heard lately of married spouses sleeping in different rooms because of snoring! It doesn’t have to be that way. Dr. Eagar can make a custom fit oral sleep appliance to help. Both my husband and I wear one. I sleep better because my airway is open AND because I am not woken up by my husband snoring!
Snoring costs bed partners sleep. Even if you don’t think your snoring is a problem, maybe it is affecting your partner. One of the most loving things I know of, is getting treatment via an oral sleep appliance so that your partner can get better sleep.