Do you struggle with constant exhaustion? Does your fatigue affect your mood and your relationships with others? If so, you may be struggling with sleep apnea. When you have this condition, your breathing will stop while you are asleep, causing you to wake up multiple times each night. In many cases, you may not even be aware of these interruptions. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can also cause loud, embarrassing snoring. At Value Dental Centers in Gilbert, AZ, we can treat both OSA and snoring with a simple appliance to realign your jaw at night. Not only will your device improve your sleep, mood, and current wellbeing. It could also have important benefits for your long-term health.
What Is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
OSA is a relatively common condition that can affect patients of all ages. However, it is most likely to impact men, middle aged patients, and overweight individuals. If you have obstructive sleep apnea, your soft palate or tongue will droop into your throat, blocking air flow. When your breathing stops, you will wake up, often unconsciously. This can happen anywhere from a few times to a few hundred times a night.
Because you will never get the full night’s rest you need, you may experience a number of symptoms. These may include:
- Daytime sleepiness
- Problems with concentration
- Headaches when you wake up
- Frequent nighttime urges to go to the bathroom
- Waking up suddenly in the night, especially with a sharp gasp
Snoring and Its Link to Sleep Apnea
As air squeezes past your drooping soft tissues, it will create loud vibrations, or snores. Therefore, snoring is one of the most common symptoms of OSA. However, you may snore even if you do not have sleep apnea. Even by itself, this condition can be quite embarrassing. It can also be disruptive to your spouse, and you may sleep more fitfully, as well.
How We Treat Sleep Apnea and Snoring
Our custom-made oral appliances are a great option for both snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. After we take impressions of your teeth, our lab will create a device that will fit comfortably in your mouth. The appliance will fit over teeth, gently pushing your lower jaw forward. This will tighten your soft palate so that it does not droop down into your throat. Alternatively, we can provide a tongue retaining device. This appliance will hold your tongue forward in your mouth to keep your throat open.
Most patients find oral appliances to be vastly preferable to CPAP, the traditional method of treating OSA. When you use CPAP, or continuous positive airway pressure, you will sleep with a mask. A machine will direct a stream of air through the mask, which will keep your throat open. CPAP machines are bulky, and many people have trouble sleeping with them. In contrast, oral appliances are small, easily transportable, and easy to adjust to.
The Vital Importance of Treating OSA
Our effective sleep apnea treatment can have far-reaching effects. First, you may notice a dramatic improvement in your symptoms just a few nights after you begin wearing your device. You will wake up feeling refreshed, your mood may soar, and your personal interactions may improve. In addition, OSA treatment will protect and enhance your overall health. If you suffer from untreated sleep apnea, you are at a higher risk for cardiovascular disease, heart attack, and stroke. It also makes it more difficult to manage diabetes. Fortunately, appropriate treatment can reduce these risks and, in some cases, extend your life.
Contact Us for the Care You Need
Learn more about sleep apnea and snoring. Contact us to schedule a consultation and, if applicable, receive your custom-made oral appliance.