Snoring and Sleep Apnea

 

 

night guards may help

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Nightguards | Cosmetic Dentistry Center MA

What Are Night Guards?    What are Oral sleep apnea devices ?

If you often wake up with jaw pain, earaches, or headaches, or you find yourself clenching or grinding your teeth, you may have a common condition called “bruxism.” Many people do not even know they grind their teeth, because it often occurs during sleep. If not corrected, bruxism can lead to broken teeth, cracked teeth, or even tooth loss.

There is an easy, non-invasive treatment for bruxism. Night guards are an easy way to prevent the wear and damage that teeth-grinding causes over time. Custom-made by our office from soft material to fit your teeth, a night guard is inserted over your top or bottom arch and prevents contact with the opposing teeth.

Sleep Apnea Oral Appliances & Dental Devices

Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea – Oral Appliance Therapy. “Sleep Apnea Mouth Device”

Summary: Oral appliance therapy, also known as mandibular advancement device or splint (MAD, MAS) for the treatment of sleep apnea and snoring. American Sleep Association oral appliance

There are several treatment options for sleep apnea. One of the options is the oral appliance. Also called Jaw Advancing Device (JAD) or Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD), these sleep apnea oral appliances are custom made by dentists using a plastic-like mold to form to the specific shape of the patients teeth and mouth. Not only do they work against sleep apnea, they are also effective to stop snoring.

ASA SOMNODENT FUSION TYPODENT sleep apnea oral appliance

somnodent sleep apnea mouth guard device 2


How Does the Sleep Apnea Oral Appliance Work?  Click here for more  info

Sleep apnea oral appliances work by moving the jaw forward, which increases the size of the upper airway, thus reducing the air resistance that leads to sleep apnea and snoring.

Sleep  apnea & Snoring

 

Sleep apnea  & Snoring

Sleep apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts. You may have sleep apnea if you snore loudly, and you feel tired even after a full night’s sleep.

 

 

Overview

Sleep apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts. You may have sleep apnea if you snore loudly, and you feel tired even after a full night’s sleep.

The main types of sleep apnea are:

  • Obstructive sleep apnea, the more common form that occurs when throat muscles relax.
  • Central sleep apnea, which occurs when your brain doesn’t send proper signals to the muscles that control breathing.
  • Complex sleep apnea syndrome, also known as treatment-emergent central sleep apnea, occurs when someone has both obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea.

If you think you might have any form of sleep apnea, see your doctor. Treatment can ease your symptoms and may help prevent heart problems and other complications. Your physician will write a prescription for an intra-oral device that your dentist will fabricate and fit perfectly for you.

Symptoms

The signs and symptoms of obstructive and central sleep apneas overlap, sometimes making the type of sleep apnea more difficult to determine. The most common signs and symptoms of obstructive and central sleep apneas include:

  • Loud snoring, which is usually more prominent in obstructive sleep apnea
  • Episodes of breathing cessation during sleep witnessed by another person
  • Abrupt awakenings accompanied by shortness of breath, which more likely indicates central sleep apnea
  • Awakening with a dry mouth or sore throat
  • Morning headache
  • Difficulty staying asleep (insomnia)
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness (hypersomnia)
  • Attention problems
  • Irritability

When to see a doctor

Consult a medical professional if you experience, or if your partner notices, the following:

  • Snoring loud enough to disturb the sleep of others or yourself
  • Shortness of breath, gasping for air or choking that awakens you from sleep
  • Intermittent pauses in your breathing during sleep
  • Excessive daytime drowsiness, which may cause you to fall asleep while you’re working, watching television or even driving

Many people don’t think of snoring as a sign of something potentially serious, and not everyone who has sleep apnea snores. But be sure to talk to your doctor if you experience loud snoring, especially snoring that’s punctuated by periods of silence.

Ask your doctor about any sleep problem that leaves you chronically fatigued, sleepy and irritable. Excessive daytime drowsiness (hypersomnia) may be due to sleep apnea or to other disorders, such as narcolepsy.

 

Diagnosis

Your doctor may make an evaluation based on your signs and symptoms or may refer you to a sleep disorder center. There, a sleep specialist can help you decide on your need for further evaluation.

Such an evaluation often involves overnight monitoring of your breathing and other body functions during sleep. Home sleep testing may also be an option. Tests to detect sleep apnea may include:

  • Nocturnal polysomnography. During this test, you’re hooked up to equipment that monitors your heart, lung and brain activity, breathing patterns, arm and leg movements, and blood oxygen levels while you sleep.
  • Home sleep tests. In some cases, your doctor may provide you with simplified tests to be used at home to diagnose sleep apnea. These tests usually involve measuring your heart rate, blood oxygen level, airflow and breathing patterns. If you have sleep apnea, the test results will show drops in your oxygen level during apneas and subsequent rises with awakenings.

If the results are abnormal, your doctor may be able to prescribe a therapy without further testing. Portable monitoring devices don’t detect all cases of sleep apnea, so your doctor may still recommend polysomnography even if your initial results are normal.

If you have obstructive sleep apnea, your doctor may refer you to an ear, nose and throat doctor to rule out any blockage in your nose or throat. An evaluation by a heart doctor (cardiologist) or a doctor who specializes in the nervous system (neurologist) may be necessary to look for causes of central sleep apnea.

Treatment

Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP)

For milder cases of sleep apnea, your doctor may recommend only lifestyle changes, such as losing weight or quitting smoking. And if you have nasal allergies, your doctor will recommend treatment for your allergies. If these measures don’t improve your signs and symptoms or if your apnea is moderate to severe, a number of other treatments are available.

Certain devices can help open up a blocked airway. In other cases, surgery may be necessary. Treatments for obstructive sleep apnea may include:

Therapies

  • Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). If you have moderate to severe sleep apnea, you may benefit from a machine that delivers air pressure through a mask placed over your nose while you sleep. With CPAP (SEE-pap), the air pressure is somewhat greater than that of the surrounding air, and is just enough to keep your upper airway passages open, preventing apnea and snoring.

Although CPAP is the most common and reliable method of treating sleep apnea, some people find it cumbersome or uncomfortable. Some people give up on CPAP, but with some practice, most people learn to adjust the tension of the straps to obtain a comfortable and secure fit.

You may need to try more than one type of mask to find one that’s comfortable. Some people benefit from also using a humidifier along with their CPAP systems. Don’t just stop using the CPAP machine if you experience problems. Check with your doctor to see what modifications can be made to make you more comfortable.

Additionally, contact your doctor if you are still snoring despite treatment or begin snoring again. If your weight changes, the pressure settings of the CPAP machine may need to be adjusted.

  • Other airway pressure devices. If CPAP continues to be a problem for you, you may be able to use a different type of airway pressure device that automatically adjusts the pressure while you’re sleeping (Auto-CPAP). Units that supply bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) are also available. These provide more pressure when you inhale and less when you exhale.
  • Expiratory positive airway pressure (EPAP). These small, single-use devices are placed over each nostril before you go to sleep. The device is a valve that allows air to move freely in, but when you exhale, air must go through small holes in the valve. This increases pressure in the airway and keeps it open.
  • Oral appliances. Another option is wearing an oral appliance designed to keep your throat open. CPAP is more reliably effective than oral appliances, but oral appliances may be easier to use. Some are designed to open your throat by bringing your jaw forward, which can sometimes relieve snoring and mild obstructive sleep apnea.

A number of devices are available from your dentist. You may need to try different devices before finding one that works for you. Once you find the right fit, you’ll still need to follow up with your dentist repeatedly during the first year and then regularly after that to ensure that the fit is still good and to reassess your signs and symptoms.

 

 

Contact our office for Overnight sleep apnea  home testing……….. Easy and non-invasive……. Dr. Walk     617-965- 7673

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