While people with sleep apnea do snore, not all snoring means that you have sleep apnea. However, if you are a habitual snorer it’s a good idea to visit your family dentist in Montville NJ to get a proper diagnosis, as sleep apnea – also known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea – is a very serious disorder.
What are the Symptoms of Sleep Apnea?
- Constant, loud snoring while you are sleeping.
- Chronic tiredness during the day.
- Pauses in breathing (around 10 seconds) while sleeping.
- Gasping episodes while sleeping. These are known as Hypopnoea episodes and they occur when your throat muscles relax too much and your airway partially collapses. These are especially dangerous as they drastically reduce the oxygen flow into your body and brain.
- Waking up with a dry mouth.
- Headaches in the morning.
Why is Sleep Apnea a Serious Condition?
The name of this disorder comes from the Greek words for “without breath”. Affecting around 22 million Americans, this disorder disrupts breathing as you sleep, which can lead to:
- Chronic tiredness
- Impaired concentration
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- High glucose levels
- Acid reflux
- Headaches (especially in the morning)
Many people who suffer from sleep apnea simply feel as though they are getting a poor night’s rest, which means that it can go undiagnosed and untreated for years. Not only does this affect your health, but also your quality of life.
How is Sleep Apnea Treated?
There are a few different treatments available for sleep apnea, but the most popular and effective is a prescription for continuous positive airways pressure (CPAP), a mask that is worn over the nose and mouth while you sleep that regulates breathing and prevents your airway from collapsing. While this sounds like it may be uncomfortable, it has had very effective results, giving patients and their partners the restful night’s sleep they need while reducing your risks of developing serious health conditions.
Another treatment option is a custom-fitted dental appliance that repositions your jaw in order to keep your airways open. Fitted by a dentist who specializes in this area of dentistry, this can be an appropriate solution for some patients.
In some very specific cases, oral surgery may be required to give you a permanent solution to your sleep apnea disorder. These include thermal ablation, hyoid advancement and uvulopalatopharyngoplasty.
With the help of a qualified and experienced dentist, you’ll be able to find a solution that gives you the best possible results.
Speak to our Family Dentist in Montville, NJ for a Sleep Apnea Consultation
Dr. Anthony Cannilla is a professional and caring dentist offering comprehensive oral healthcare services including the diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea. If you think your snoring may be due to sleep apnea, our team is happy to evaluate your case and create a customized treatment plan specific to your needs.