How obstructive sleep apnea patients can find relief with their dentist
Obstructive sleep apnea, which is sometimes referred to by the acronym OSA, is a sleeping disorder that can become problematic for patients. At Taylor Dental Care, Drs. Glenn and Michelle Taylor are pleased to offer a solution that doesn’t require a clunky, uncomfortable device like the CPAP machine. When patients have received a definitive diagnosis from their primary care provider of obstructive sleep apnea, they can skip using a CPAP machine and instead ask their dentist about oral appliance therapy.
What is obstructive sleep apnea?
Drs. Glenn and Michelle Taylor describe obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, as a sleeping disorder that can cause a cycle of poor breathing throughout a single night’s sleep. Due to an obstruction in the airway, usually from the tongue collapsing into the airway space during sleep, the patient can no longer breathe and awakens. Once they fall back asleep, the cycle continues. It has been found that patients with obstructive sleep apnea will often fall asleep and awaken hundreds of times in a single night, leaving them still feeling fatigued after what they have believed to be a whole night’s rest.
Is obstructive sleep apnea dangerous?
When left untreated, obstructive sleep apnea can be a factor in many systemic diseases. The causes of stroke, heart attack, high blood pressure, memory loss, dementia and diabetes all have ties to sleep apnea. It is critical to get a proper diagnosis and treatment for sleep apnea to help prevent these diseases from happening. We recommend a sleep study for most adult patients, especially those with evidence of tooth grinding, snoring or poor sleep and tiredness during the day. These are all symptoms that you may have obstructive sleep apnea.
Can obstructive sleep apnea be cured?
OSA cannot be cured but can be managed to ensure patients are getting a good night’s rest. While the CPAP machine effectively maintains open airways, many patients avoid wearing them because they are cumbersome and uncomfortable. Therefore, the dentists at Taylor Dental Care are excited to offer another treatment option with oral appliance therapy. Patients can wear a customized mouth appliance while they sleep to address the problems associated with this condition.
How do I learn more?
Call Taylor Dental Care at (801) 285-6607 to request an appointment at our facility.
Do you snore excessively? Do you suffer from daytime fatigue? Do you awake during the night with shortness of breath? You may suffer from the life-threatening sleep disorder known as sleep apnea. About 1 in every 15 Americans suffer from sleep apnea and it is a problem that many don’t even realize they might have. But what does this have to do with dentistry? Because sleep apnea is caused by an airway obstruction, the disorder can be treated through the mouth. The Thorton adjustable positioner, or Tap appliance is one of the more popular ways to treat sleep apnea. When the jawbone yes lax, the tongue and soft tissue obstruct the airway. The tap appliance advances the jaw bone, allowing the air to flow freely and making sleep more restful throughout the night. If you think you might suffer from sleep apnea, talk to your dentist today about possible treatment options.