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Sleep Apnea & Mental Health
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Sleep Apnea and Mental Health in San Jose and Santa Clara, CA

Sleeplessness takes a tremendous toll on the body and mind. Your body needs rest to stay healthy. Without it, our brains can’t repair and replenish themselves.

A proper sleep routine is vital to maintaining your mental health. However, an increasingly common cause of sleep deprivation is sleep apnea, a disorder that causes your airway to become blocked at night. Studies have found that sleep apnea patients are more likely to report mental health problems than the general population.

Many sleep apnea patients don’t remember waking up, which can make diagnosing the disorder hard. Thankfully, diagnosing and treating sleep apnea with a sleep test and oral appliance can have extraordinary mental health benefits.

Sleeping well is crucial to maintaining your emotions and memories. Read more about how you can break the cycle of symptoms between sleep apnea and mental health.

How Sleep Apnea Affects Your Brain

Your brain uses sleep to recharge. It repairs itself during distinct phases of sleep. If those sleep phases are interrupted by sleep apnea, your mind may not repair itself to its full potential. Interrupted sleep can leave you feeling groggy, irritable, and unable to concentrate.


Your ability to focus is vital in your everyday life. However, sleep apnea can make it hard to keep your mind from wandering. Lack of sleep can impair your ability to drive, work, or write, hurting your ability to keep up with your busy schedule.

Emotions and Memory Processing

If you’re not completing the sleep cycle, you may feel unexplained emotions left over from previous days. Because you process information and experiences during sleep, a healthy sleep cycle also contributes to memory recall. You’re better able to remember and process memories when you’re sleeping well.

Depression & Anxiety

Sleep apnea can cause depression and anxiety or contribute to their symptoms. Irritability and out-of-control feelings are symptoms of sleep apnea that can contribute to mental health problems. Many of the signs of mental health issues mirror the signs of sleep apnea.

If you think your sleep apnea is compounding on mental health problems, our experienced dental team recommends undergoing a sleep study to identify the cause of your symptoms. Sleep apnea treatment can make it easier for your body to break negative cycles of sleep apnea and mental health.

Schedule A Consultation With Dr. Goel Today

Your mental health symptoms might be caused by undetected sleep apnea. Our team of sleep professionals recommends undergoing a sleep study, so we can find the best treatment option for you. Contact our San Jose and Santa Clara offices at (408) 404-8257 and (408) 549-1602 today to schedule your sleep apnea treatment consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can sleep apnea cause mental health problems?

Yes, there’s a link between sleep apnea and mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression. Evidence suggests that poor sleeping habits or a lack of sleep contribute to and are a symptom of depression or depressive episodes. The distressing symptoms of sleep apnea often mirror the effects of depression, causing other existing symptoms to become more noticeable or debilitating.

Similarly, patients report increases in anxiety while suffering from sleep apnea. The daytime symptoms are exhausting, and not knowing the cause can heighten nervousness and anxiety about them.

Dr. Goel understands the toll sleeplessness takes on your mental health. Find relief for your sleep apnea symptoms and understand the causes by undergoing a sleep study. We’ll review your results and find the solutions that will alleviate your symptoms.

How does sleep help improve your mental health?

Your body goes through several cycles while you’re asleep. The cycles allow your brain, muscles, and eyes to rest and rejuvenate. We also process memories, maintain focus, and restore the previous day’s emotions at this time.

But when you’re suffering from sleep apnea, frequent nighttime wakeups that you might not even remember can cause your body to lose out on the restorative properties of sleep. This leaves you feeling exhausted and stressed. Thankfully, sleep apnea treatments can help you restore your body’s cells and get the restful sleep you need. Discover our sleep apnea treatments today by scheduling your consultation at our San Jose or Santa Clara dental offices.