Chimon Family Dentistry offers sleep apnea and snoring treatment in our Albertson, NY, office. Call 516-877-2737 for an evaluation.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
The most common type of the disorder is obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea causes repeated breathing interruptions at night. The airway becomes restricted due to throat muscles relaxing too much. It can also be blocked by excess tissue in the neck, especially among overweight patients.
Research suggests that sleep apnea could double or even triple a patient's risk of a heart attack. Doctors also tie obstructive sleep apnea to stroke, Type 2 diabetes, and liver problems, among other severe conditions. Sleep apnea may also be associated with early-stage memory loss or dementia risk.
Sleep apnea can also cause home and family relationship disruptions due to lost sleep. Having this disorder treated improves patients' lives.
Signs You Need Sleep Apnea Treatment
Here are several warning signs of sleep apnea:
Talk to your dentist and primary care doctor if you have one or more of these symptoms.
How Dentists Can Relieve Sleep Apnea
Dentists have several options for helping patients overcome sleep apnea and snoring.
Guiding Lifestyle Changes
Sleep apnea happens more often in patients who are overweight, patients who smoke, and patients who experience nasal congestion at night. Dentists can help patients connect with weight loss and smoking cessation resources. They also recommend seeing a doctor for assistance with nighttime congestion.
Custom Dental Appliances
Dentists can create special oral appliances that properly position the tongue and lower jaw if lifestyle changes do not work to relieve sleep apnea. Changing the position of the tongue and lower jaw helps to keep the airway open and reduces pauses in breathing.
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) Machines
Another option that dentists offer is the use of a CPAP machine. CPAP systems deliver a supply of air that can push through airway blockage. A CPAP machine is not as comfortable to wear at night as a custom oral appliance, but many patients need extra breathing support and relief.
Patients could receive surgical treatment to open their airways if other methods fail. For most patients, minimally invasive treatments like oral appliances work well.
If you don't have sleep apnea but still experience heavy snoring, dentists can help you as well. Oral appliances similar to those used for sleep apnea can help you breathe more easily at night.
Patients who snore may have trouble concentrating, daytime fatigue, and a higher risk of cardiovascular problems even if they do not have full-blown sleep apnea.
Why Choose Chimon Family Dentistry?
At Chimon Family Dentistry, we have created a friendly, non-judgmental atmosphere for our patients. We provide advanced care for people with sleep apnea and snoring problems. We can also cover your general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry needs.
Frequently Asked Questions About Sleep Apnea and Snoring
Here are patient questions about sleep apnea and snoring:
I believe I have sleep apnea. How should I receive a diagnosis?
Before seeing a dentist for sleep apnea, you must see your primary care provider. Your primary care doctor may refer you to a sleep specialist. You may need to go to a sleep center to have a study completed. Once you have a positive diagnosis, your physician can work with your dentist to create a treatment plan.
Is treating obstructive sleep apnea essential?
Treating obstructive sleep apnea is crucial for your overall health. As mentioned above, it can cause many critical health disorders, including heart disease and stroke.
Are oral appliances safe?
Yes, oral appliances are safe to use under a doctor's or dentist's supervision. They position the jaw forward so the airway is less likely to become constricted during sleep.
How does obstructive sleep apnea cause heart disease?
Researchers believe that when people with obstructive apnea try to breathe, they cause changes in the pressure inside the chest cavity. These changes in pressure may damage the heart, leading to severe disease.
People with obstructive sleep apnea also have varying oxygen levels in the body. This condition is called oxidative stress. It promotes inflammation, which can lead to a host of health problems.