Frequently Asked Questions About Sleep Apnea

Even though many people don’t understand their snoring, many of them still automatically assume that it is harmless to their overall health. In fact, unless their partners complain about the noise, they may not see it as much of a problem at all. If the condition is minor, you may be able to alleviate snoring with simple changes like switching your sleeping position (sleeping on your back increases the risk of snoring). If your snoring is severe, or if it is merely a symptom of a larger disorder, such as sleep apnea, then you could require professional treatment to relieve snoring and sleep apnea.

About Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Does snoring always indicate sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea means you repeatedly stop breathing in your sleep, and snoring (which is often caused by a blockage in your airway) is a telltale sign of it. Though all patients who exhibit obstructive sleep apnea will snore as a result, not everyone who snores experiences sleep apnea.

How does sleep apnea cause sleep deprivation?

The mechanisms behind sleep apnea often involve your oral and throat tissues completely blocking your airway as you sleep. Once you stop breathing, your biological systems panic, and your brain will force your body to start breathing again by waking it up. Although sleep apnea patients typically remain unaware of the obstruction, it can prevent them from falling into a deep, restful sleep, which in turn may lead to symptoms and risks associated with sleep deprivation.

What are the common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea?

One of the more unsettling facts about obstructive sleep apnea is that you might not know it is present, since it doesn’t rouse you from consciousness.  Still, the condition causes enough symptoms that you might begin to suspect something is not quite right. Some common symptoms of sleep apnea include (but are not limited to);

  • Crankiness and unusual irritability
  • Daytime fatigue
  • Inability to concentrate, or to think critically
  • Blurred vision, nausea, and in severe cases, unconsciousness


Dr. Shawn Hofkes and the staff at Cerritos Dental Surgery are highly qualified to address complex issues, including those that require oral surgery to correct. To schedule an appointment or consultation with Dr. Hofkes, contact us today by calling 562-584-4082. We proudly serve patients of all ages from Cerritos, Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and all surrounding communities.