Airway Dentistry - Sleep Apnea
Getting a good night of rest is an important part of ensuring that you look, feel, and can perform at your very best. Anything that disrupts your sleep can take a toll on both your physical health and mental wellbeing. One of the most commonly diagnosed sleep disorders is sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can do more than keep you from getting restful sleep. It can lead to several potentially serious health concerns. Wilson Dentistry can help, by offering solutions that meet your individual needs.
Understanding Sleep Apnea
Many men and women in the United States live with obstructive sleep apnea. This condition can lead the individual to stop breathing dozens of times during a night. This pause in breathing could last anywhere between a few seconds to over a full minute.
Sleep apnea is a chronic condition. It takes place after your muscles have relaxed when you fall asleep. This allows the soft tissues in the mouth to collapse. This collapse results in a blockage to the airway. This leads to repeated pauses in breathing, which can decrease your oxygen levels. Each of these pauses in breathing is typically followed up by very brief periods of being awake. This can cause disruption to your sleep.
There are several factors that can increase your risks for sleep apnea. This could include misalignment in the jaw, a narrowed airway, or being overweight.
Common Signs of Obstructive Sleep Apnea
There are several signs of sleep apnea common in those who struggle with it. This includes snoring and making choking or gasping sounds while sleeping. Snoring and sleep apnea are seen more often in men, however, both can be seen in women, particularly after menopause.
Excessive sleepiness during the day may be commonly seen, even after being in bed for an appropriate number of hours. It is also quite common to experience dry mouth, a sore throat, headache and irritability. Some may experience mood swings and signs of depression.
Is It Important To Treat Sleep Apnea?
Getting treatment for sleep apnea is important to protect your health. If left untreated, chronic sleep apnea can result in memory loss, excessive sleepiness and fatigue. This can make it difficult to focus at work or at school. Sleep apnea can also prove to be a threat to your physical safety. It can increase the risk for driving while drowsy, and it can potentially lead to accidents in the workplace.
In addition, sleep apnea that is left untreated can increase your potential for a number of serious health concerns. This could include an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Sleep apnea can potentially be life-threatening.
Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea
There are several options that can prove effective for the treatment of sleep apnea. Our dentists can offer oral appliance therapy. This treatment uses a device that looks much like a mouthguard. It is worn during sleep, and can help to maintain an airway that is open and unobstructed.
Oral appliance therapy has been shown to be effective at treating both snoring and sleep apnea. The oral appliance will provide support for your jaw’s forward position, which will help to maintain the clear and open airway needed.
Many who have experienced both the CPAP mask and the oral appliance have mentioned that they find the oral appliance to be the more comfortable option. The oral appliance is also portable, easy to take care of and doesn’t make the same noise that the CPAP machine will make.
If you or a loved one are displaying the signs of sleep apnea, call Wilson Dentistry at (346) 340-5440 to schedule your appointment with our team. We offer treatments that can help you to breathe easy at night. Ask your dentist whether an oral appliance could be the right option for you. Get the help you need today to improve the quality of your sleep and your health.