Sleep Apnea Therapy
Patients who experience chronic daytime sleepiness, wake multiple times during the night, or who have serious snoring concerns may be experiencing sleep apnea. Apnea is the cessation of breathing for ten or more seconds at a time during sleep. There are numerous risk factors and genetic predispositions that make patients more likely to suffer from sleep apnea. Some of these risk factors include:
- Thick neck – those patients with a neck circumference of 17 inches are at a much higher risk for sleep apnea than other patients.
- Obesity – patients who are well above a healthy weight are much more likely to experience obstructive sleep apnea.
- Masculinity – men are at a much higher risk for sleep apnea than women, and should be checked more frequently for warning signs of apnea. We are seeing a growing number of female sleep apnea patients over 50.
If you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea or you’re concerned you or a family member may be suffering from sleep apnea, we invite you to contact our team. At Vista Dental Care, we offer customized, comfortable oral appliance therapy to help patients suffering from sleep apnea to breathe deeply and sleep soundly.
Oral appliances are beneficial for numerous patients including those:
- Who have difficulty adjusting to the more traditional continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy
- Who travel frequently making CPAP inconvenient
- Who do not achieve adequate improvement with CPAP alone
Oral appliance therapy shifts the jaw forward keeping the airway clear during sleep. This prevents snoring and sleep apnea incidents and ensures patients remain soundly asleep throughout the night whether at home or away. We are happy to provide sleep apnea consultations for any patients. Simply contact our team to find out more today.
Sleep Apnea FAQs
If you feel groggy and tired when you wake up in the morning, that can translate into your daily life and impact your cognitive abilities. If you’re reading through this page, you probably have some questions about sleep apnea in Sparks and whether or not that’s what’s causing your quality of rest to decline. The good news is, it’s a manageable condition that could be treated using simple techniques and technology. Below, we’ve collected some common questions we get to help you understand more about sleep apnea.
What is causing my sleep apnea?
Depending on the type of sleep apnea you have, it can be influenced by a variety of different factors. The most common type is obstructive sleep apnea, caused by blocked airways. When there’s too much weight or fat around your neck or airways, it can cause them to become obstructed, making it harder to get continuous airflow throughout the night.
Some risk factors that may increase your chances of experiencing obstructive sleep apnea include obesity, hereditary traits such as a narrow throat, a thick neck, or a round head, and other medical conditions like a deviated septum. Additionally, smoking, excessive alcohol consumptions, and the use of sedatives can impact your sleeping condition.
How can I know for sure if I have sleep apnea?
If you have all the tell-tale signs of sleep apnea but need to be diagnosed in order to seek treatment from your dentist in Sparks, you’ll need to have a sleep study done. During this, a sleep specialist will hook you up to different equipment that monitors your oxygen levels, brain activity, and breathing patterns while you sleep. Once your doctor gets the results, they’ll be able to determine an accurate diagnosis of what kind of sleep apnea you suffer from.
Is a CPAP machine hard to fall asleep with?
You’ve probably heard of how cumbersome and loud CPAP machines are. Nowadays, they’ve been specially crafted to be less invasive and quieter than ever, but still, some patients have a difficult time falling asleep with them. They’re smaller than the size of a shoebox and require you to place a small nose-mask over your face while you’re asleep.
If you’re unable to adjust to your CPAP machine, you can speak with your dentist in Sparks to discuss other treatment options available to you, like a custom oral appliance. These are small trays that are similar to a retainer that are custom made to open your airway and maximize oxygen flow. Sometimes, if you’re not noticing improvement with your CPAP machine alone, you could use both treatment options together to help get the quality of rest you deserve.
How long does a sleep study take to complete?
The amount of time it takes to complete a sleep study varies from anywhere between nine and 10 hours. When you arrive at the facilities, your sleep specialist will go over the process with you and get the monitors and equipment set up. This usually takes about an hour. After that, most studies require about six hours of sleeping time to record results and establish a diagnosis.