In dentistry, it is very common for patients to assume that dental care only concerns the health of teeth. This idea is not farfetched, having that teeth make a big part of the oral cavity. However, there is so much more than a dentist is capable of, as is illustrated in general dentistry. Several dental works couple up to create the world of dentistry.
Ideally, when a dentist is not caring for your teeth and gum tissue, he/she is looking for into other areas of your overall health. A big part of this examination helps in the diagnosis of sleeping disorders, particularly sleep apnea. Did you know that snoring is not necessarily something to be taken lightly? Read on to find out more about it and the treatment options available.
It is a sleeping disorder that causes patients to experience shortness of breath while they sleep. The shortness of breath lasts between a few seconds to a minute. Technically, patients hardly realize they have a problem unless the condition progresses and worsens.
Many patients that suffer from sleep apnea are not aware of their condition. It is hard to detect the condition unless the symptoms are very severe. One of the give-away signs of this disorder is usually snoring at night. While snoring may be something your friends and family tease you for, it could be a serious indicator of a health problem.
Sleep apnea comes in many forms, ranging from mild obstructive sleep apnea to chronic sleep apnea. The longer the periods of shortness of breath, the more severe the condition is. Diagnosing this can be a hard thing to accomplish, especially where the patient is oblivious of the sleeping patterns.
Some of the ways you can find out whether you have this sleeping disorder are by considering the following symptoms:
While there is no sure sign that you have sleep apnea, paying attention to your sleeping habits can help detect the problem. Consider the above-mentioned factors, relative to the quality of sleep you get during the night. If you are still unsure about it, there is no better time to reach out to a dentist.
To detect whether or not you have this disorder, your dentist will first ask you a couple of questions. Other than that, some other diagnostic tests for sleep apnea include:
Sleep apnea affects patients differently. The obstruction of your airways causing difficulty in breathing may be mild, and be significant for other patients. Thanks to these variations, the treatment options differ, depending on the severity of the condition.
The treatment options for sleep apnea range between invasive options, to simple non-invasive procedures and lifestyle alterations. They include the following:
Oral devices – your dentist or sleep expert might recommend the use of oral devices to help with breathability at night. This involves using a special mouthguard made for treating sleep apnea. It helps keep your airway open by holding your jaw in a particular position as you sleep.