Sleep Better With Some Help From Our Dentist In ChicagoNovember 28, 2016
Do you know what sleep apnea is? Do you know if you have it? According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, around 20 million Americans are affected by this sleep disorder, but only about half of the people are aware of their condition.
In truth, many people who know they have sleep apnea are not treating it like they should, either. We will get to some reasons why in a moment. For now, just know that treatment may be as close as our dentist office in Chicago, IL.
We want you to know some common sleep apnea symptoms so you can determine if you should be tested. We also want you do know how Northalsted Dental Spa may be able to provide you with a treatment that you are likely to use.
Call 773-245-2779 or contact us online to schedule a consultation soon.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
As we mentioned above, sleep apnea is a sleep disorder. Specifically, it is a sleep disorder in which someone stops breathing when they fall asleep.
The most common type is obstructive sleep apnea. This occurs when your muscles relax, which allows soft tissues to cut off your airway.
For someone with mild sleep apnea, these breathing stoppages can occur between 4 and 15 times per hour. Someone with severe sleep apnea can stop breathing 30 or more times per hour. These kinds of stoppages typically last between 10 and 30 seconds.
The breathing stoppages end when you wake up — briefly — to take a breath or two. These are so brief that you may not remember them at all, although your spouse may be quite aware of them.
At Northalsted Dental Spa, we want all our patients to breathe easier. Call 773-245-2779 to learn more about what we can do to help you or someone you love.
Sleep Apnea Treatments
To treat sleep apnea, you need a way to keep your airways open while you are asleep. The most common sleep apnea treatment is a CPAP machine. CPAP is short for continuous positive airway pressure.
With this machine, you wear a mask over your mouth and/or nose to push air into your airways. This pressure forces the soft tissues off your airways, so you can breathe … as long as you use the CPAP.
This is a problem for many people. Some find the mask irritating. Some remove the mask in their sleep. Some have trouble falling asleep with the sound of the machine. Others feel that the tube that connects the mask to the machine makes it harder to get comfortable.
As an alternative to CPAP machines, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine approved oral appliances (similar to mouthguards) as a treatment option. These appliances work by pulling your jaw forward slightly.
This movement helps your airways to stay open. You can keep breathing, and as you will soon see if you keep reading, this is good for you and your spouse or partner.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. Michael Griffin at our Chicago dentist office to learn how we can create an oral appliance to help you.
Sleep Apnea Symptoms
If you have sleep apnea, then you have probably heard something like the following:
“Wake up, you’re snoring too loud.”
“Your snoring kept me awake again last night.”
Or “How can you snore so loud?”
Loud, constant snoring is one of the tell-tale sleep apnea symptoms. The reason this happens is related to the reason you stop breathing. When your airways are restricted, this amplifies the sound of your snoring.
It stops when you stop breathing, and your airway is completely blocked. Then you wake up briefly, and the cycle starts again. This is preventing you from getting deep, healthy sleep, but it’s also making it harder for the person sleeping next to you to get a good night’s sleep, too.
Without healthy sleep, you may suffer from sleep deprivation. When you wake up, you may feel just as fatigued as you did when you went to bed. This can leave you feeling irritable. This also may lead to daytime sleepiness, which can make it difficult to focus on work and can increase your risk of being in a car accident.
We don’t want that for you. At Northalsted Dental Spa, we would rather you feel rested, refreshed, and rejuvenated.
And like you, we want your spouse to sleep well, too.
Contact us today if you would like to find out more about what we can do for your sleep apnea.
How To Begin Your Sleep Apnea Treatment
We may be able to help you set up a sleep test. If you’ve already been tested to confirm your sleep apnea, we can get started on making an oral appliance to help you and your loved ones sleep a little easier.