The warning signs of sleep apnea and how your dentist can help you treat it

The warning signs of sleep apnea and how your dentist can help you treat it

Jul 01, 2020

Sleep apnea is a chronic disease that causes breathlessness during sleep. There are two types of this condition: obstructive sleep apnea, complex sleep apnea, and central sleep apnea.

The most common of all strains of this condition is obstructive sleep apnea. During apnea, the soft tissues of the airways collapse. Apneas are interruptions in breathing. The collapse disrupts the normal flow of oxygen to and from the lungs.

With central sleep apnea, the brain stops sending signals to the body to breathe. The body reacts as if there were gaps. However, physical disturbance of the airways does not take place.

Complex sleep apnea syndrome is not a common condition. People with untreated sleep apnea wake up tired and lethargic. If the disease is not treated, it leads to physical and long-term psychological complications.

What are the signs of sleep apnea?

The signs and symptoms of obstructive and central sleep apnea are almost the same. The similarity makes it difficult to determine which of the conditions you have. The most common symptoms of both conditions are:

  • Loud snoring
  • Episodes reported by another person where you stop breathing while sleeping
  • Experiencing a dry mouth upon waking
  • Gasping for air while sleeping
  • Headaches upon waking
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Irritability

  • Difficulty paying attention even when awake

Who Is At Risk Of Sleep Apnea?

Who is at risk of sleep apnea?

  • Be overweight
  • People over 40
  • Being a man
  • Nasal obstruction due to allergies and septal deviation problems
  • Large neck (over 16 inches for women and 17 inches for men)
  • Having a small jaw, a big tongue, or tonsils
  • Family with a medical history

The effects of sleep apnea

Sleep apnea increases the risk of other health complications. Problems lead to the deprivation of physical and mental health. Sleep apnea leads to the following problems:

  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Depression
  • ADHD deterioration
  • Irregular heartbeats, heart attacks and heart failure

Sleep apnea, if left untreated, leads to poor performance in daily tasks. It can also lead to poor academic performance in children and adolescents.

The role of dentists in the treatment of sleep apnea

Dentists can be a valuable partner in treating obstructive sleep apnea. A dental appointment can help you understand your treatment options after you are diagnosed with sleep apnea. At Central Connecticut Family Dentistry , we recommend wearing an oral appliance. However, treating sleep apnea is not a general dentistry service.

Oral appliances can ease symptoms in people who are light weight. Dental appliances for the movement of the lower jaw are the most commonly used. They push the lower jaw forward, and in the position, the muscles are tightened, which collapse during breaks.

Oral appliances strengthen and stiffen the airways, which reduces the number of apnea over time. Some mouth appliances are adjustable, which allows you to change the position of the jaw.

After visiting the dentist, they will assess the condition of your mouth and teeth to determine if you are a potential candidate for jaw adjustment devices. Once he proves you need the equipment, the dentist will create a model of your teeth. The dentist will send the model to the lab to serve as a prototype in the development of your oral appliances.

You should wear mouth aids while you sleep to control your sleep apnea symptoms.

What are the benefits of an oral appliance to treat sleep apnea?

Oral appliances reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack and diabetes by treating sleep apnea. You also improve daytime alertness and mental stability. There are other advantages of oral appliances such as:

  • They are easy to use and will adapt to better results
  • Easy to carry when transporting as you can put them in your purse

Avoid the further complications that sleep apnea causes. Visit your dentist today and get the treatment you need.

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