Although it certainly saps your energy, leaves you drowsy throughout the day and the loud snoring interferes with your partner’s rest, sleep apnea isn’t merely detrimental to your quality of life. This condition, in which people stop breathing repeatedly for very brief periods during sleep, appears to have some sort of relationship with serious health conditions like stroke, high blood pressure and heart disease.
So, to stop the snoring, improve your alertness during the day and boost your health, effective sleep apnea treatment is essential. It doesn’t have to be complex, either. Rather simple sleep apnea appliances can eliminate the symptoms and consequences of sleep apnea.
In cases of obstructive sleep apnea, which occurs when the soft tissues at the back of the throat collapse and cover up the airway opening, sleep apnea appliances can hold either the jaw or tongue in a forward position to reduce the risk of the tissue sliding back.
Unlike continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) masks, which are cumbersome and often abandoned by patients, sleep apnea appliances are quite comfortable and much less likely to disrupt your sleep themselves. They also fit inside of the mouth, eliminating the claustrophobic feeling that some people get when they use a sleep mask.
Patients should get these appliances from a dentist who is experienced in and qualified to provide this treatment option. You can schedule an initial consultation to give the dentist an opportunity to examine your jaw’s structure and recommend the oral appliance therapy that is most likely to be effective in your case.
Many patients have success with oral appliance therapy, although some may find that it does not resolve their symptoms. In those cases, a dentist may refer a patient to another specialist, such as an oral surgeon, for further treatment. Oral appliance therapy is generally tried initially, though, as it is a more conservative intervention.
If you have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, consult with one of our providers to learn more about oral appliance therapy and how it can help to alleviate your symptoms. Call our office at Parker-Nickolas-Read Dental today to schedule your appointment.