If your partner or roommate has complained about your loud snoring, you may suffer from sleep apnea. The most common type of sleep apnea is called obstructive sleep apnea. This occurs due to a physical blockage, usually the collapsing of the soft tissue in the back of the throat, which prevents you from breathing properly as you sleep. Symptoms of sleep apnea include loud snoring, waking up at night short of breath, headaches or extreme drowsiness throughout the day. These are all things you should mention at your next dental appointment. Dr. Bowersox can refer you to a sleep apnea specialist to properly diagnose you. If it is determined that oral appliance therapy will help resolve your sleep apnea, our office can create that oral appliance for you. If you suspect you are suffering from sleep apnea, please schedule an appointment with our team today or call us at 410-642-5634 with any questions regarding our treatment solutions.
Sleep Apnea Treatment in Westminster, MD
Snoring and sleep apnea can have determinantal impacts on your quality of life. As your trusted dentist in Westminster, MD, Dr. Bowersox is happy to provide you with sleep apnea treatment. Here are some common questions we get regarding our sleep apnea treatment:
What are the risk factors of sleep apnea?
While anyone can suffer from sleep apnea, it is most common in older adults. Obesity, smoking, drinking, use of sedatives or tranquilizers, and family history can also put a person more at risk for developing sleep apnea. Lifestyle changes may be necessary for treating sleep apnea.
Is sleep apnea dangerous?
Snoring and sleep apnea can be a sign of major health complications. If left untreated, it can lead to high blood pressure, increasing the risk of heart failure and stroke. Additionally, because many sleep apnea patients do not get a good night’s rest, they may experience issues with falling asleep at work or school, making it dangerous to drive or operate heavy machinery. Sleep apnea can also affect a patient’s risks with certain medications and surgical procedures.
What is oral appliance therapy?
Oral appliance therapy is when we create a customized dental device, similar to a nightguard, that gently helps keep your lower jaw in a forward position. This device increases the space between the airway passage and helping you breathe better. It is less invasive than a C-PAP machine, which is another method of treating more severe sleep apnea. Patients enjoy oral appliance therapy because it is minimally invasive, portable, and easy to clean after use.
Is a nightguard comfortable?
Yes, the customized oral device that we create to treat your sleep apnea is comfortable. While it may take some time to adjust to using this appliance every night, it is made from a soft material that should not feel uncomfortable in use. The oral appliance fits snuggly into your mouth and over your teeth. It is designed specifically for your teeth, with your comfort in mind. It does not prevent you from breathing with your mouth open and will even eliminate snoring for patients with sinus congestion or allergies.