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Dental Appliances Can Help You With Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea can harm your health, but our Ottawa dental experts can provide you with information on dental devices that may help manage it.

About Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a condition that happens when a person stops breathing or has very shallow breathing while they sleep. This can be caused by something blocking the airway or by the person not making enough effort to breathe.

There are three types of sleep apnea. 

  • Obstructive sleep apnea 
  • Central sleep apnea 
  • Complex sleep apnea syndrome (occurs when someone has obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea)

Possible Causes Of Sleep Apnea

When you fall into a deep sleep, the muscles in your throat and tongue also relax. But for people with sleep apnea, these muscles relax too much and can collapse, blocking the airway. This causes the flow of oxygen to stop, which makes your brain wake you up slightly to start breathing again. This can happen many times during the night, which can really mess up your sleep.  

Diagnosing Snoring & Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea can cause a range of symptoms including loud snoring, headaches, fatigue, irritability, depression, and problems focusing.

Not everyone who has sleep apnea will snore, so it's important to see a medical professional if you experience any of these symptoms. Once diagnosed, your dentist can help you sleep better with different treatments.

Your dentist will check your teeth, tongue, airway, and jaw, and might even take an x-ray of your airway to find the right appliance for you.

Sleep Apnea Devices Or Oral Appliances 

Dental appliances can help by positioning your lower jaw further forward, effectively pulling your tongue away from the throat and the soft palate to open your airway. These dental appliances are:

  • Portable
  • Easy to care for
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Easy to insert and remove
  • Quiet and not disruptive to any bed partners (unlike some sleep apnea machines)
  • Convenient for travel

Treatment Of Sleep Apnea

If you have sleep apnea, you might not get the deep and restful sleep your body and brain need to function properly. This could cause a lot of health problems and decrease your quality of life and lifespan. 

Sleep apnea could lead to various complications such as metabolic syndrome, high blood sugar, heart problems, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and resistance to insulin. Since sleep apnea can make you feel tired during the day, you may be more likely to get into accidents at work or while driving. 

By getting treatment for sleep apnea from your dentist, you can improve your overall health and well-being. 

If you suffer from sleep apnea, contact our Riverside Family Dentistry dentists today for a consultation.

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