Sleep Appliance Dentistry
Getting a good night’s sleep every night is important for all aspects of your health – physical, mental and emotional. Sleep provides your body with the rest it needs to function properly. It also helps to keep your cognitive abilities sharp, and your emotions regulated. Poor sleep, especially on a regular basis can contribute to serious issues, including high blood pressure, depression, and anxiety. One of the most common causes of poor sleep is sleep apnea. Jon C. Packman, DDS can help with sleep appliance dentistry.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a serious condition that causes you to stop breathing while you sleep. This can be due to blockages in your throat (excess tissue, your tongue) or a failure of communication between your brain and the muscles that control breathing. It can also be caused by a mixture of the two. Obstructive sleep apnea, when the airways become blocked, is the most common type of sleep apnea. Referred to as apneic events, you stop breathing for several seconds. Some events may last as long as a minute and a half. When you stop breathing, you wake up, even if you don’t realize it. Sleep apnea ranges in severity from mild (5 to 14 apneic events per sleeping hour) to severe (30 or more apneic events per sleeping hour). It’s no wonder you wake up feeling more exhausted than when you went to bed!
Diagnosing Sleep Apnea
There are several symptoms that can point to sleep apnea:
|Feeling overly tired throughout the day, even though you went to bed at a decent time.
|Falling asleep at work or while doing daily tasks.
|Drifting off behind the wheel.
|Difficulty concentrating and making decisions.
|High blood pressure.
|Issues with digestion.
When you experience these symptoms, it is important that you seek treatment as soon as possible. A trained sleep professional will be able to make an accurate sleep apnea diagnosis and will be able to get you the help you need.
How Sleep Appliance Dentistry Helps
Sleep appliance dentistry is one way that you can reclaim your sleep, with the help of oral appliance therapy. An oral appliance is similar to a mouth guard that you wear while you sleep. Traditionally, a C-PAP machine is used for sleep apnea. However, some patients find the machine difficult to sleep with, or don’t respond well to it. The oral appliance provides an alternative. Designed for those with mild to moderate sleep apnea, the oral appliance holds your jaw in proper alignment, preventing it from slipping back. This helps to hold the tissues near your throat, including your tongue, away from the entrance to the airway, preventing blockages.
An oral appliance is a custom fit device, which we create especially for you from a three-dimensional impression of your mouth. There are oral appliances available at drug stores, but these oral appliances often cause more harm than good, and can worsen your condition rather than improve it. It is imperative that you have a custom fit oral appliance created to provide you with the best results.
If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, sleep appliance dentistry can help. Contact Jon C. Packman, DDS today at (704) 978-7060 to schedule your consultation.