Sleep Apnea is one of those medical terms you hear periodically, and don’t give too much thought to; unless you’ve been diagnosed with it of course. You may imagine snoring, and the effects this has on a relationship. You may conjure up images of a big loud machine you wear to bed, producing even more noise and discomfort. But what is sleep apnea exactly, and what does it have to do with dental care?
Sleep apnea can have effects on your health far beyond the annoyance of snoring. People are being increasingly diagnosed and treated for this common disease. Keep reading to find out more about the health risks and treatments available.
Sleep Apnea Can Affect your Health
Sleep Apnea is a disorder that causes disruptions in breathing during sleep. Often it causes severe snoring, or choking sounds in the sufferer. Sometimes it is so severe that a person will stop breathing altogether, often many times a night, which can be very dangerous. It is caused by the obstruction of the airway by the soft tissues of the mouth and throat. Several factors play a key in this, including weight and age.
These sleep disruptions can cause you to be tired during the day, making it difficult to concentrate or focus. And it is not just a simple matter of being somewhat tired during the day (who isn’t sometimes?!), there are more serious symptoms and consequences to this type of sleep disruption. These can include chronic depression, memory lapses, vulnerability to illnesses, irritability and more.
The longer you go with untreated sleep apnea, the more serious the affects can be. Having such intensely disrupted sleeping and breathing patterns is very unhealthy and dangerous. Long term consequences may include high blood pressure, heart failure, stroke or diabetes.
Sleep Apnea is not just a snoring issue, it is a health and lifestyle issue, and it is important to correct it.
Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea
There are a couple of treatment options available for Sleep Apnea. A C-Pap machine can be used, and in very severe cases it is necessary. They can be noisy, uncomfortable and cumbersome however, and often patients fail to use them for these reasons.
One treatment option available is a Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD), sometimes called Oral Appliances or Dental Sleep Devices.
Mandibular advancement devices work by moving the jaw forward, thereby opening that part of your airway previously blocked by the soft tissues of your mouth and throat. This is a fairly simple solution to an otherwise annoying, unhealthy, and oftentimes dangerous problem. Mandibular devices may also be productive and helpful in the long run, as they strengthen and increase the activity of your mouth and throat muscles.
Sleep Apnea Treatment at Smiles Dental
Ceasing snoring from your nightly routine is just one of the many benefits to seeking out treatment for your sleep apnea. Patients live healthier, longer lives with the proper treatment for this common ailment.
At Smiles Dental, we’re experts in sleep apnea treatment! We specialize in making dental appliances used to treat sleep apnea, and we can help you get on the road to recovery and a better night’s sleep.
If you think you may have sleep apnea, or have been diagnosed with sleep apnea and wish to seek out treatment and solutions, please call today for a free consultation.