In the United States, over 12 million adults exhibit symptoms of sleep apnea. Patients with sleep apnea are deprived of necessary rest and have an increased risk of medical conditions such as high blood pressure, depression, and stroke. For many, the only treatment option is an uncomfortable CPAP machine. In today’s blog, your Livonia family dentist, Dr. James Stewart, discusses an alternative to the CPAP machine that can help you finally get the good night’s rest.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when soft tissue in the back of the throat obstructs airflow. With airflow limited, the brain is deprived of oxygen. In response, the brain wakes the patient up to restart the breathing process. Patients with sleep apnea may endure this cycle hundreds of times each night. Sleep apnea sufferers report similar symptoms, such as chronic snoring, waking up gasping or choking, or frequent daytime drowsiness.
A common method of treating sleep apnea involves the use of a CPAP machine. The continuous positive airway pressure machine, or CPAP machine, enables a patient to breath by forcing air through their nose and mouth. The patient wears a mask connected to a machine that pumps air into their oral and nasal passages. While the machine works, patients usually complain about the noise level and the discomfort of wearing the mask during sleep.
Thankfully, Dr. Stewart offers an alternative to the CPAP machine. Dr. Stewart may prescribe patients a special oral appliance. Similar to a mouth guard or retainer, oral appliances come in a variety of sizes and styles. After a consultation and oral examination, Dr. Stewart can decide which appliance will best address your sleep apnea symptoms. Worn at night, an oral appliance repositions the jaw and keeps airflow open. Patients often report better sleep and a reduction in sleep apnea symptoms.
Schedule an Appointment with Your Livonia Family Dentist
Are you having difficulty sleeping due to sleep apnea? Make an appointment with Livonia family dentist Dr. Stewart for a diagnosis and to discuss treatment options. Contact our 48154 dentist office. Schedule a visit today by calling (734) 425-4400. We serve patients from Livonia, Farmington, Farmington Hills, and surrounding areas.