Obstructive sleep apnea is a medical condition that can impact all aspects of your life. OSA often goes undiagnosed for many years allowing secondary conditions to develop. Treating sleep apnea is key for improving your cognitive skills and preventing further damage to your oral and systemic health.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that occurs when the airway becomes blocked during sleep. The vital organs are cut off from oxygen repeatedly during the night. For most patients, the blockage is caused by a relaxation of the muscles in the back of the throat causing an involuntary collapse of the soft tissue to obstruct the airway.
Do I have sleep apnea?
Patients with sleep apnea are often tired, restless, and have difficulty concentrating. OSA can lead to depression, make you irritable and affects your overall quality of life.
You may have sleep apnea if you:
- Snore loudly
- Wake to gasp for air
- Morning headaches
- Groggy, difficulty concentrating
- High blood pressure
If you wake to gasp for air, wake with headaches, or constantly feel tired even after a full 8-hours of sleep, you may have sleep apnea. Patients of any age or sex could develop sleep apnea. Patients over 40, males, and those overweight run a higher risk of sleep apnea and should be screened for the condition more frequently.
How do I treat my sleep apnea?
The dentists at Palmetto Smiles have advanced training in treating sleep apnea. Using discreet and effective oral sleep appliance therapy, Dr. Sang is able to help patients enjoy a better nights rest.
An oral sleep appliance for sleep apnea is custom designed to your specifications. The devices fit comfortably in your mouth and are worn while sleeping. The device holds the jaw in proper alignment and keeps the airway open allowing for normal, healthy oxygen flow.