What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Believe it or not, your sleep impacts every single part of your health! Sleep problems can be a huge detriment to your health, and unfortunately affects many people. One of the most common sleep problems is sleep apnea. Nearly 30 million adults in the US have sleep apnea! Take a look at the warning signs below.
People actually STOP breathing a few hundred times a night for a few seconds, or to more than a minute at a time. Your airway actually collapses as the muscles, including your tongue, fall back and block your airway.
What are the most common SIGNS?
gasping or choking sounds during sleep
- Narrow mouth
- Excess body weight
Large neck circumference
Should you treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Treating obstructive sleep apnea is incredibly important to your health. When left untreated, sleep apnea often causes excessive daytime speediness or fatigue, as well as morning headaches and memory loss. Sleep apnea also is a threat to your safety as it increases your risk of drowsy driving and workplace accidents. Untreated sleep apnea raises your risk for serious health problems like:
High blood pressure
Chronic acid reflux
* untreated sleep apnea increases your risk of death!
How is OSA Diagnosed?
Although a medical doctor must determine if you have sleep apnea, we are trained to screen you for apnea. We look for certain risk factors in your mouth. If we determine you need a sleep test, we can send you home with an overnight test from our office. Our sleep physician can then interpret the data from your sleep test and make suggestions for treatment.
How is OSA Treated?
Dependent on the severity of your sleep apnea, continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, oral appliance therapy, or surgery may be suggested.
- CPAP therapy involves wearing a face mask connected by tubing to a constantly running machine.
- Oral appliance therapy uses a mouth guard-like device-worn only during sleep to maintain an open, unobstructed airway.
- Surgical options include a variety of procedures. All have varying side effects and rates of success.
Oral Appliance Therapy
Research shows that oral appliance therapy is an effective treatment option for snoring and mild-moderate obstructive sleep apnea.
An oral appliance is worn in the mouth only while you sleep and fits like a sports mouth guard or an orthodontic retainer. Oral appliances support your jaw in a forward position to help maintain an open upper airway.
Many patients consider a sleep apnea appliance to be more comfortable to wear than a CPAP mask. Oral appliances also are quiet, portable and easy to care for.
Oral appliance therapy is covered by many medical insurance plans.
At our practice, we check every single patient for TMJ/TMD/Neuromuscular disorders. These issues can occur when there is a structural issue with your jaw joint, which in turn causes pain in the muscles. This can cause a great deal of pain, discomfort, as well and headaches, neck, and facial pain. Dr. Bindi and her father Dr. Patel are extensively trained to help correct TMJ issues