• Sleep Apnea Dental Treatments

  • Sleep Apnea is a common issue, but one that often goes unrecognized. A bed partner may find snoring annoying, but does not recognize that loud, frequent snoring can be a sign of sleep apnea. In a patient with sleep apnea, breathing is disrupted or becomes very shallow during sleep. These times with little or no breathing can last from a few seconds to 20 seconds and can occur hundreds of times during the Sleep Apnea DentistSleep apnea causes many problems, since it is a form of chronic sleep deprivation. This deprivation results in the patient spending far less time in deep, restorative sleep and much more time in light sleep. This can cause a loss of energy, concentration and energy during the day.

    In addition to consequences in energy levels, physical health problems including high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and weight gain can occur. The good news is that treatment is possible and the symptoms can be eliminated or significantly reduced.

    Many patients with sleep apnea are advised to use supplemental oxygen or a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airflow Pressure) device while sleeping. While this treatment can be successful, it does not work for everyone. Dental devices may be the answer.

    A dental device is an acrylic mouth piece, similar to a mouth guard, that is worn while sleeping to position your jaw correctly. Other devices may fit around the head and chin for lower jar repositioning.

    Two other devices that a sleep apnea dentist can fit you for are used to position the mandibular and or tongue during sleep. These devices open the airway and are very effective for mild to moderate sleep apnea.

    It is important to get treatment from a physician and a dentist who specializes in treating sleep apnea patients so that the correct device can be selected. Visits to the dentist to reposition or resize the device may be occasionally necessary for the best results.

    If you suspect sleep apnea in yourself or a partner, visit a dentist to see what options are best suited for you. The symptoms of sleep apnea should not be ignored since health complications are likely.