TMD is a condition that causes pain in the jaw. If you have TMD, you might have clicking or popping sounds when you try to open or close your mouth. The good news is that you have several treatment options available. Keep reading to find out more.Sometimes, the symptoms might go away without being treated.…
Sleep Apnea Treatment Options From a Sleep Medicine Dentist
Living with sleep apnea can be scary for both you and your family members. This condition is nothing you should dismiss or shrug off. If you have this issue, you repeatedly stop breathing in the night. The consequences can cause you not to get enough sleep at night. Worse, it could eventually lead to heart problems, including heart attacks or strokes. You should speak to your dentist right away about the most effective ways to treat this serious health condition.
The warning signs
Determining that a person has sleep apnea does not have to be guesswork. There are some clear signs that an individual might be struggling with this disease. One of the most obvious is snoring, which a bed partner could readily point out. Snoring occurs when relaxed or enlarged muscles or tissues in the mouth or throat are preventing proper airflow. The restricted air vibrates as the person tries to breathe.
Other signs are effects of waking up several times in the night as the person stops breathing and suddenly restarts. These include irritability and being short-tempered. A person with sleep apnea may also be exhausted the next day or have trouble focusing. High blood pressure can also be a result of this condition.
Meeting with the dentist
Before taking any treatment action, an individual should consult a sleep medicine dentist. This professional has the knowledge and training to make a proper diagnosis. The dentist will examine the patient and will take X-rays of the mouth and throat to identify airway blockage. This examination enables the dentist to prescribe the right treatment.
Treating sleep apnea with a mouthguard
When people think of dental appliances, they might think of devices to hold teeth in place or to prevent teeth-grinding. Such an apparatus can also treat sleep apnea. The dentist can custom-make a mouthguard to fit over the patient’s teeth and push the jaw down and forward. This will open the airway and allow for more airflow while the person sleeps. The dentist can adjust the mouthguard as necessary.
Another way in which a person’s airflow has blockage is when the tongue rolls to the back of the mouth. This can make it difficult for oxygen to get into and out of the airway. A tongue depressor holds the tongue in place during sleep. The patient should only wear it when they are sleeping.
When mouth appliances are not enough to treat sleep apnea, surgery might be necessary. The dentist will determine what operations are necessary. These may include removing excess tissue or creating more room in the airway. Patients may have tonsils or adenoids removed. The dentist might have to trim other abnormally large tissues to improve the flow of air in the mouth.
Treat your condition now
Never put off a visit to the sleep medicine dentist if you are struggling with sleep apnea. The longer you wait, the more likely you are to experience serious problems. A device such as a tongue depressor or mouthguard could be just what you need to treat this condition. Talk to your dentist about what makes the most sense for you.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Sleep Apnea in Briarcliff Manor, NY.
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