What is Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a breathing disorder which occurs during sleep due to the narrowing or total closure of the airway which causes breathing to stop. When breathing stops for 10 seconds or more, the brain sends out a signal to wake up. This process repeats itself throughout the night as often as 20 to 30 times an hour. With severe sleep apnea, these episodes can occur as often as 400 times per night, and can cause the person to awaken every 30 seconds!
Although OSA sufferers may experience hundreds of apnea episodes per night, they are unlikely to remember any of them. In fact, if the sufferer lives alone or sleeps separately they may never be aware of their condition. Often it takes a spouse, family member or close friend to bring the problem to light.
How do I know that I have Sleep Apnea?
Find Out if You Suffer From Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
- Do you snore?
- Do you have a large neck circumference or are you over weight?
- Do you doze off unintentionally during the day?
- Do you often wake up feeling tired or having a headache?
- Do you have problems concentrating for long periods of time?
If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, you may be suffering from OSA. If left untreated, patients could be put at risk of even more serious problems, like high blood pressure, heart trouble, and even premature death.
Those who display symptoms of OSA should consult their General Practitioner, Sleep Specialist or ENT Surgeon. A sleep study is the test necessary to properly diagnose OSA. Once diagnosed with the disorder, it is essential to seek the treatment option that is right for you!
How can a dentist help me?
Traditionally, sleep apnea has been treated with use of a CPAP machine. The sleep apnea sufferer is required to wear a mask attached to a bulky machine while sleeping. As you can imagine, CPAP machines are quite expensive, and wearing a breathing mask to bed every night can be uncomfortable and difficult to adjust to. Many patients cannot tolerate the device and search for alternatives.
Thankfully, the SomnoMed Company has taken to provide you with a better night’s sleep. Dentists can fit patients for SomnoDent, a custom made oral device similar to a night guard or retainer. The SomnoDent appliance repositions the jaw to open the airway in a similar way as is done during CPR, thus providing an effective breathing solution while you sleep. The vast majority of SomnoDent patients report noticeable improvement in sleep quality. It will almost certainly put an end to your snoring and will most likely eliminate or significantly reduce your OSA.
Choosing the right dentist to fit and insert your SomnoDent appliance is essential. We will ensure that the appliance fits comfortably, and will work with you to make any necessary adjustments. We will also show you the simple steps to insert, remove and adjust the SomnoDent appliance, and give the necessary instructions and support to get your breathing therapy underway.
at Cowdin Cosmetic Dentistry we would like to guide you through the SomnoDent process as seamlessly as possible. We cater to special accommodations such as upper dentures or implementing any other dental work in conjunction with SomnoDent. Choose us to help you treat your Sleep Apnea effectively!