SNORING AND SLEEP APNEA
Many people suffer from snoring activity during sleep. While half of these people are “simple snorer’s” the other half may have a serious sleep disorder called Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). A custom dental appliance helps to reposition the jaw and tongue to improve airflow while reducing or eliminating the patients snoring. Obstructive sleep apnea is a very common and potentially life-threatening medical disorder that prevents airflow during sleep. More than 18 million Americans have sleep apnea, and many are not receiving treatment. Sleep apnea occurs when tissue in the back of the throat collapses and blocks the airway, reducing the amount of oxygen delivered to all of your organs including your heart and brain. People with sleep apnea may snore loudly and stop breathing for short periods of time. When the blood-oxygen level drops low enough, the body momentarily wakes up. It can happen so fast that you may not be aware you woke up. This can happen hundreds of times a night, and you may wake up in the morning feeling unrefreshed.
In addition to snoring and excessive daytime sleepiness, sleep apnea can cause memory loss, morning headaches, irritability, depression, decreased sex drive and impaired concentration. Sleep apnea patients have a much higher risk of stroke and heart problems, such as heart attack, congestive heart failure and hypertension. Sleep apnea patients are also more likely to be involved in an accident at the workplace or while driving.
A physician is required to perform an overnight sleep study to properly diagnose obstructive sleep apnea. If needed we can prescribe a home sleep study, which is read by a board certified sleep physician. Our doctors will discuss all available options regarding testing, types of oral appliances, and medical insurance billing at your appointment.