Sleep Apnea Diagnosis and Treatment
Do you know that sleep apnea affects approximately 18 million Americans? Furthermore, there are estimates that approximately 10 million Americans have this sleep disorder, but have not been diagnosed with it. That’s scary.
What is sleep apnea?
When people are suffering from sleep apnea, they stop breathing while they sleep for at least a period of 10 seconds or more. Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type, and occurs when the throat muscles relax so much that they obstruct (or block) the flow of air coming in and out of the nose and mouth.
Sleep apnea should not be taken lightly. There are serious side effects and consequences of not seeking treatment right away.
As a matter of fact, sleep apnea sufferers are 3 times more likely to be involved in a vehicle accident than those without the sleep disorder. They also are more susceptible to falling asleep unexpectedly throughout the day, such as while they are driving.
What are some sleep apnea symptoms?
- daytime drowsiness
- falling asleep at inappropriate times throughout the day
- sudden waking, choking, gasping for air while you sleep
If you suffer from any of these symptoms, we encourage you to schedule your appointment and talk to Dr. Silverman as soon as possible.
What kinds of treatments for sleep apnea are available?
After a sleep study is performed, it will be determined whether or not you suffer from sleep apnea. If so, there are a few different treatments available.
- The most common treatment is the continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) apparatus. Many sleep disorder sufferers find significant relief with using the CPAP while they sleep.
- For those sufferers who dislike the CPAP machine, there are other dental appliances that can help.
- Surgery may be recommended, but is not necessarily needed to find relief from the sleep disorder.
- Additional simple, non-invasive treatments can include: changing your sleep position; sleeping on your side instead of your back can potentially help your situation; using pillows to prop yourself up in a different position; avoiding sleeping pills or alcohol.
Seeking treatment right away can lessen the chances of more serious problems in the future. For instance, without treatment, you increase your risk of heart failure and heart problems. Furthermore, for those sufferers who do not seek treatment right away, the chances of obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart attack also increase.
If you think you may be suffering from sleep apnea disorder, we encourage you to call
Advanced Cosmetic & Family Dentistry today. Dr. Silverman is experienced with detecting, diagnosing, and treating sleep apnea disorders. So get the nighttime relief you deserve and sleep better today!