Does your family complain of your snoring? Perhaps you think you might have sleep apnea due to symptoms you experience. Sleep apnea is a difficult condition to diagnose because it manifests during sleep.
Even though sleep apnea is hard to detect without monitoring vitals, it can wreak havoc on your wellbeing and health when it is left untreated. Our dentist offers a comfortable and effective solution to sleep apnea with oral appliance therapy. Receiving treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can be life-changing because people finally achieve the proper rest they require to function optimally.
The Basics on Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a common disorder where oral or nasal obstructions prevent a person from breathing while they sleep. As the sleeper goes without air, the brain will initiate a mild fight or flight response to wake a person just enough to resume proper breathing.
Cycles of apnea followed by wakefulness can occur hundreds of times in an 8-hour sleep period. Even though most people resume sleeping quickly after waking, people will still feel deprived of sleep because they are unable to progress through each stage of sleep naturally. Interrupted sleep means that a person may not receive as much deep sleep as they need. Deep sleep, for instance, is vital to rejuvenating the body’s organs and tissues.
Without treatment, those with OSA will continue to be deprived of the sleep that they deserve and need.
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Even though sleep apnea is hard to detect without professional equipment, there are some common symptoms that a person could have. Following are some typical symptoms of OSA:
- Dry mouth upon waking
- Morning headaches
- Fatigue – even after a full night of sleep
- Gasping for air
- Memory loss
Sleep Apnea Treatment Options
Once a sleep study confirms a diagnosis of OSA, our dentist can provide a treatment consultation. We offer oral appliance therapy with the SUAD Ultra Elite device. An oral appliance will position the lower jaw forward to increase the size of the airway. For many, this appliance can eliminate airway obstruction without the need for bulky or loud machinery.
For questions or to learn about the convenient at-home sleep apnea screening process we offer, contact our team at Lynn Dental Care today.
Clenching and grinding your teeth can lead to a number of long-term problems. Unfortunately, most people who clench and grind do so at night, when they are unable to control the action. Because clenching and grinding are something you do unconsciously, use of a nightguard is one of the best ways to keep the habit from damaging your teeth. You can find out more about nightguards from our Centennial dentist, who is dedicated to keeping your teeth strong and healthy.
Causes of Clenching and Grinding
The causes of clenching and grinding can vary. In addition, clenching and grinding can be a symptom of other problems that need to be addressed. Some issues that can cause grinding include:
- TMJ disorder
If clenching or grinding are symptoms of misalignment or TMD (also known as TMJ), your dentist will probably want to investigate the root cause and provide appropriate treatment. In addition, your dentist might recommend a nightguard to reduce the side effects of clenching and grinding.
Using a Nightguard
A nightguard is a latex appliance that is custom-molded to fit your mouth. Your dentist uses a special gel to make a mold of your teeth. The nightguard is then manufactured in an offsite lab. When it returns from the lab, your dentist will have you try it on and make any necessary modifications so that it is comfortable.
For the best results, you should wear your nightguard all night, every night. The hard latex helps protect the surfaces of your teeth from damage when you clench and grind. It won’t stop the actual grinding, but it will greatly reduce the risk that you might inadvertently damage your teeth.
If you do not wear the nightguard every night, not only will your teeth possibly be damaged, but after a couple of weeks the nightguard might not fit properly anymore. This is because your teeth might move in small increments that cause the mold of your bite to no longer be accurate. So, for the best possible results, wear the nightguard regularly and contact our office for any questions you have!