Obstructive Sleep Apnea is a sleep disorder marked by interruptions and pauses in breathing during sleep that is caused by the physical obstruction of the airway. People who suffer from this condition actually stop breathing for up to two minutes at a time, and most people who have it are not even aware that they do. More importantly, untreated sleep apnea can contribute to several serious health conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, liver problems, and in some severe cases even death.
All forms of sleep apnea must be diagnosed by a sleep physician. We recommend that you talk to Dr. Brough as well as your primary care physician if you suffer from any symptoms of sleep apnea. Common signs of sleep apnea include:
- Extreme drowsiness during the day
- Frequent urinating at night
- Personality changes and irritability
- Nighttime grinding or clenching of teeth
- Difficulty staying asleep
- Difficulty concentrating and/or paying attention
- Falling asleep during daytime activities
- Awakening with a dry or sore throat
- Frequent morning headaches
- Presence of Gastro-Esophageal-Reflux Disease (GERD)
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the result of a physical closure of the airway during sleep. This is usually caused by the soft tissue at the back of the toungue and tonsil area that puts pressure on the airway when lying in a supnie position. One solution to this problem is a CPAP machine. CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. These machines can be bulky, and some people don’t like using them.
Since the muscles of the tongue are connected to the lower jaw, another solution is to move and hold the lower jaw forward. This results in opening the airway without the need of a CPAP machine. A dental sleep appliance can accomplish this by holding the lower teeth forward. Even people who don’t have Obstructive Sleep Apnea but snore can benefit by using an appliance like this to reduce or even eliminate snoring.
For a safe, comfortable and convenient way to address your sleep apnea, Dr. Brough Family & Cosmetic Dentistry can offer multiple appliances that you can choose from. With the cone beam imaging capabilities that we have, Dr. Brough can offer state-of-the-art digital appliances, such as the Opti-Sleep appliance and the ProSomnus appliance. Both of these appliances work very well to reduce both snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea. We also offer a less expensive appliance called Silent Nite. All of these appliances are easy to wear and will help you (and anyone you sleep with) get a restful night’s sleep.
Dr. Grant Brough will use our cone beam CT X-ray machine to accurately map your airway and digitally design your sleep appliance. We also offer at-home sleep testing for patients who are concerned about Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). This test can help identify patients who might have OSA.
If you are interested in reducing snoring, or if you are concerned about Obstructive Sleep Apnea for you or a loved one, call our office in Layton, Utah, at 801.773.5285 for an appointment.