Our dentists in 100 Mile House explain how dentists can help you get a sleep apnea diagnosis and address your concerns in this post.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a breathing disorder that causes shallow breaths and pauses in breathing while sleeping. These breathing pauses can last anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes and occur up to 30 times (or more) per night. Normal breathing resumes after each pause, usually with a choking sound or a loud snort.
Breathing issues can, as you might expect, interfere with your sleep and cause a number of issues that could be detrimental to your general health, such as an increased risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, and heart attack. It raises the possibility of experiencing an irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) as well as getting into a car or workplace accident.
Why does sleep apnea often go undiagnosed?
Sleep apnea is frequently misdiagnosed because it cannot be detected by a blood test or during a routine checkup.
Mild Sleep Apnea
Simple, non-invasive treatments for moderate to mild sleep apnea, such as oral appliances or weight loss (since being overweight is sometimes a primary cause of sleep apnea), are commonly used.
Severe sleep Apnea
Dentists typically advise patients with severe sleep apnea to use CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure). The most common treatment for obstructive sleep apnea is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), which uses air pressure to keep the airway open while you sleep.
For patients who cannot or will not benefit from consistent CPAP use, inspire therapy is a viable alternative. While you sleep, Inspire tracks your breathing and gently stimulates the nerve that moves your tongue and other airway muscles to keep them open.