The Dental Solution for Sleep Apnea
Are you struggling to get a good night’s sleep? You are not alone. According to the American Medical Association, approximately 30 million Americans have sleep apnea, but at least 80% have not been diagnosed. What is sleep apnea? What are the symptoms? How can the Tahquitz Dental Group of Palm Springs help?
Sleep Apnea Defined
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a serious sleep disorder in which breathing is interrupted during sleep. When the muscles at the back of a patient’s throat become relaxed, the breathing airway is narrowed or completely closed. This limits the intake of air. Since you aren’t getting enough oxygen, the brain momentarily wakes you up to restore airflow. These interruptions may last from several seconds to a minute or more and may occur hundreds of times in a single night.
Sleep apnea therefore leads to a decreased quality of life due to the constant lack of extended sleep. It may result in health problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
Common symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Loud or frequent snoring
- Choking or gasping sounds during sleep
- Pauses in breathing while asleep
- Waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat
- Morning headaches
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Difficulty concentrating during the day
- Mood changes, such as depression or irritability
- High blood pressure
- Night sweats
Obviously, many of these symptoms have to be noticed by someone else in the household observing the sleeper. If you or someone you love suspects the possibility of sleep apnea in your life, you should make an appointment with your dentist or physician as soon as possible to get a diagnosis.
We Are Here to Help
Dentistry can play a significant role in the management of OSA. Dental professionals at the Tahquitz Dental Group can provide custom-made oral appliances designed to keep the airway open during sleep. These devices, similar in appearance to sports mouthguards, reposition the lower jaw and tongue to enhance airway volume, therefore minimizing the likelihood of airway collapse. This keeps the oxygen flowing at night while you sleep, eliminating the primary cause of sleep apnea.
Contact the Tahquitz Dental Group for a consultation today. We want to answer any questions that you may have and help you get a more restful sleep!