Sep 18, 2018

Posted by in Dentist | Comments Off on How a Dentist Can Help Treat Sleep Apnea

How a Dentist Can Help Treat Sleep Apnea

How a Dentist Can Help Treat Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a common type of sleep disorder that causes you to stop breathing briefly but frequently while you’re asleep. About 18 million adults in the U.S. have sleep apnea which can interfere with sleep quality and duration, disrupt relationships and work, and increase the risk of premature death, heart attack, and car accidents.

While a dentist in Chicago IL may not be your first thought when you think of sleep apnea treatment, the truth is sleep dentistry can help you control your sleep apnea, get a better night’s rest, and stop disturbing your partner with snoring.

Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea

There are many ways to treat sleep apnea. Sometimes even lifestyle changes such as losing weight and quitting smoking can be enough for mild cases of sleep apnea. For moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea, positive airway pressure (PAP) therapy is most often prescribed. This involves using a CPAP or BPAP machine at night with a mask that blows air continuously into your airway to keep it open. For more extreme cases of obstructive sleep apnea, surgery may also be recommended to remove soft tissue of the throat or correct a deviated septum that is responsible for the apnea.

Surgery and CPAP machines are not the only options, however. If you are unable to use a traditional CPAP machine, you may be a good candidate for a custom mouth guard. A dental appliance is recommended by the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine if you cannot tolerate a CPAP machine. Dental appliances are best for mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea and may come in many forms. A mandibular advancement device (MAD) looks similar to a mouth guard for sports but it snaps over the lower and upper arches with hinges that allow the lower jaw to ease forward. Another option is a tongue retaining device with a splint to hold the tongue in the correct position and prevent airway obstruction.

Have you been diagnosed with sleep apnea? A dentist in Chicago IL can help. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Tomaselli to discuss your concerns and find out if you’re a good candidate for a custom mouth guard to help you breathe easy and stop the snoring. Follow us on our google+ page.

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