Snoring & Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a condition that affects how you breathe when sleeping. During sleep, normal breathing can be interrupted for 10 seconds or more hundreds of times during a single night. Untreated sleep apnea prevents you from getting enough deep, restorative sleep. Without enough deep sleep you may be sleepy, lack mental sharpness, and be less productive. Long term health effects can be serious, including weight gain, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.
Signs of Sleep Apnea
Home Treatments for Light Sleep Apnea
Treatments for Moderate to Severe Sleep Apnea
Obstructive Sleep Apnea, or OSA, affects a high percentage of the American Population. Essentially, it is a medical condition wherein the upper airway is obstructed during sleep, restricting the airflow into the lungs. As might well be expected, this can translate into anything from snoring to restless, shallow sleep, to an outright medical emergency of essentially self-suffocation. It is not something to be treated lightly.
There are two equally-endorsed methods of dealing with OSA: CPAP units and Dental Appliances. CPAP machines, which force air into the lungs on a regulated basis, have several drawbacks, including bulkiness, noise, hoses, and masks. The big advantage to CPAP units is that, when worn, they are very effective in forced respiration. The big disadvantage is that, because of their inconveniences, they are used only a small percentage of the time.
Enter the Dental Appliances, which operate by bringing the jaw forward and downward, creating more room for the tongue to move out of the back of the throat. These have the advantage of being more comfortable, less confining, and completely silent. There are no hoses, no pumps, no masks. And in a very large percentage of cases, they are as effective as CPAP machines in resolving the problem of OSA.
Physicians generally favor the CPAP units because they are an absolute: air is forced into the lungs mechanically and regularly, so the problem is addressed. Dental appliances, on the other hand, place the lower jaw where it needs to be to open the airway naturally. Both address the problem of OSA, but the Appliance, because it is more comfortable and convenient to use, is used on a much greater frequency.
Both are generally covered by your MEDICAL Insurance, not your dental plan, which cuts out-of-pocket expense dramatically.
If you currently have a CPAP unit, and are interested in trying the Dental Appliance, please give Advanced Dental Arts NW, your choice for Sleep Apnea Treatment in Portland, a call today. We can certainly help answer any of your questions or concerns.
If you suspect you may have OSA in some stage (including snoring, sore jaws or worn or chipped teeth, among other things), we can also help. We offer a take-home sleep monitor that you wear for one night, and that collects data necessary to diagnose OSA, and also records the number and intensity of Bruxing during your sleep. If it appears that you may have OSA, we will work with your physician to get you an appliance, to nip this problem at the earliest possible time.
This is more than just teeth. This is your life.
If you think you may have sleep apnea, please give us a call at (503) 446-2722. We can help identify and diagnose the severity of the sleep apnea and discuss the best treatment options for your unique situation.