Clearwater and Seminole, FL snoring and sleep apnea treatment supports lasting health, quality of life
It’s likely that all of us will snore at some point. Allergies, sinus infections, and many other things can cause the tissues in our throats to relax, partially blocking airflow. As air passes through, the throat tissue vibrates, which produces that characteristic snoring sound. Primary or simple snoring is harmless; habitual snoring can indicate underlying disorders. Obstructive Sleep Apnea, for one, is defined by tissues that relax so much that they completely block the airway. OSA symptoms include snoring, and require prompt treatment at Boulevard Dental in Clearwater and Seminole, FL.
Getting to the source
As with all conditions, it is important to distinguish between primary and secondary snoring. While snoring itself can be quite damaging to relationships, interfering with a partner’s or entire family’s sleep, it does not have the dire health consequences associated with OSA. This form of sleep apnea causes you to cease breathing during sleep. Your panicked body may awaken you with a snort or gasp as a form of self-preservation dozens of times each hour. As you might imagine, this situation does not promote the quality, restful sleep that you need to be well and to be your best parent, manager, employee, friend, or self. Chronic OSA also takes a great toll on your heart. You may have OSA if you find that, no matter how long you’re in bed, you still feel fatigued. You may have sudden or erratic mood changes, problems concentrating, and headaches that are most pronounced when you wake up.
Our dentists, Drs Wujick, Moss, Kopakin and Castillo may notice that your mouth appears dry, and that your teeth are chipped or fractured. Bruxism or teeth-grinding may accompany OSA. Every time you wake up, you may clench your jaws and grind your teeth. This behavior can damage your teeth and dental-work. You may also complain to your dentist about jaw pain, or frequent sore throats. We at Boulevard Dental are trained to evaluate your symptoms. What we find as the result of an evaluation informs the treatment that we may recommend. It is critical to resolve OSA as soon as possible, because this condition puts you at increased risk of developing high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, and heart failure.
Do you snore excessively? Do you suffer from daytime fatigue? Do you awake during the night with shortness of breath? You may suffer from the life-threatening sleep disorder known as sleep apnea. About 1 in every 15 Americans suffer from sleep apnea and it is a problem that many don’t even realize they might have. But what does this have to do with dentistry? Because sleep apnea is caused by an airway obstruction, the disorder can be treated through the mouth. The Thorton adjustable positioner, or Tap appliance is one of the more popular ways to treat sleep apnea. When the jawbone yes lax, the tongue and soft tissue obstruct the airway. The tap appliance advances the jaw bone, allowing the air to flow freely and making sleep more restful throughout the night. If you think you might suffer from sleep apnea, talk to your dentist today about possible treatment options.
Relief from snoring, sleep apnea
Patients who snore may benefit from oral appliances that are customized to their mouths. So, when they slip into the mouth, they fit appropriately and provide the correct amount of adjustment to effectively stop the snore. These “snoreguards” may reposition the jaw and depress the tongue. In turn, they keep the tissues that relax during sleep out of the way. They can’t partly block the airway. When the airway stays open, no vibration occurs.
Oral appliances for sleep apnea work in much the same way. By repositioning oral structures, the airway remains open. Tissues do not block the flow of air during sleep. Patients rest without interruption through the night. Oral appliance therapy is not appropriate for all patients who suffer from OSA. Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) is a proven treatment; however, since it requires wearing a mask connected to a machine via a tube that delivers constant, steady air pressure, there is an adjustment period. Some people never get used to wearing the mask or the sound generated by the machine. Compliance is a problem. Oral appliances present a discreet, portable, lightweight, easy-to-use, and easy-to-clean alternative for the right patient. You deserve to feel your best, and that requires quality, restorative sleep. Contact us today Clearwater (727) 758-2898 or Seminole (727) 308-6224 to schedule your appointment at one of our two area offices.