Sleep Apnea: The Causes and Risk Factors

Sasson Sarooei Health & Wellness Blog

Have you been recently diagnosed with sleep apnea, or suspect you are suffering from it? You are not alone. In order to properly treat sleep apnea (rather than give you a band-aid, such as a CPAP machine), knowing the cause of your sleep apnea is extremely important. It can be impossible to know what the root cause of your sleep apnea is without doing some investigating. Keep reading to learn more about the causes of sleep apnea and receive the proper treatment for sleep apnea.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts. If you snore loudly and feel tired even after a full night’s sleep, you might have sleep apnea.

The main types of sleep apnea are:

  1. Obstructive sleep apnea, the more common form that occurs when throat muscles relax
  2. Central sleep apnea, which occurs when your brain doesn’t send proper signals to the muscles that control breathing
  3. Complex sleep apnea syndrome, also known as treatment-emergent central sleep apnea, which occurs when someone has both obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea

Causes and Risk Factors of Sleep Apnea

Some of the major causes of sleep apnea include:

  • Being overweight. Obesity is a very common cause of sleep apnea because the excess fat around the neck can obstruct the airways. A simple lifestyle change of losing weight can greatly reduce sleep apnea symptoms or potentially get rid of it all together.
  • Anatomy. Many people naturally have thicker necks, narrow throats, large tonsils, dental issues, or jaw issues that can cause sleep apnea.
  • Use of certain medications. Many medications, such as sleep aids and other sedatives, can relax throat muscles and cause sleep apnea.
  • Use of alcohol or smoking. Smokers are three times more likely to have obstructive sleep apnea than people who’ve never smoked. Smoking can increase the amount of inflammation and fluid retention in the upper airway.
  • Medical conditions. Certain medical conditions put people at a higher likelihood of developing sleep apnea. Congestive heart failure, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, Polycystic ovary syndrome, hormonal disorders, prior stroke, and asthma.

Sleep Apnea Treatment with Raio Dental

Sometimes, sleep apnea can be helped through certain lifestyle changes. However, if it is not enough and you are looking for relief from sleep apnea symptoms, we are here for you to help you take the next step.

Located in Medford, New York, Dr. Raio is an Airway Health Specialist and Restorative Dentist. He has over 25 years of clinical experience and is a strong advocate of ongoing education, and remains on the cutting edge of the most advanced treatments available for the treatment of his patients. The clinic offers a wide range of services, such as general services, specialty services, and sleep dentistry.

For more information, visit