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What Options We Can Offer to Treat Sleep Apnea
Posted on 9/21/2020 by Palisades Surgical Arts
What Options We Can Offer to Treat Sleep ApneaIf you suffer from sleep apnea, then you would probably have heard how a doctor and a sleep clinic can help you. However, not many patients are aware that a dentist also has a role in treating sleep apnea.

What Is Sleep Apnea?


Sleep apnea is a condition that causes someone to stop breathing while they sleep. This can happen in several, short bursts. There are two types of sleep apnea that a person can suffer from, which include obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea.

Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type, which causes the airway's soft tissue to collapse. This collapse then directly interrupts breathing by preventing oxygen from flowing into the lungs.

Central sleep apnea is when someone's brain causes them to stop breathing. While sleeping, the patient's brain will stop sending messages to tell the body to breathe.

How Our Dentist Can Help Sleep Apnea


Our team can only help if you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, by recommending effective treatment methods. Here are two common techniques to treat mild to moderate sleep apnea.

The most used treatment is for the patient to wear an oral appliance. A popular choice is a Mandibular Advancement Device that has been custom made for a perfect fit. This device looks just like a mouthguard and works by pushing the lower jaw forward. During obstructive sleep apnea, when the collapse happens, the device prevents the muscles from falling. This can result in the patient's airway becoming stronger, which can lead to a reduction in apnea symptoms.
Another device that can be fitted is a tongue-retaining device. This is a less common technique, but it is suitable for patients who have a wider mouth. This device works by holding the tongue forward to keep the airway open.

These devices may feel odd and uncomfortable at first, however, with a properly fitted device you will soon adjust to wearing it. If you have a confirmed diagnosis of sleep apnea, schedule an appointment today to see how one of our team can help treat it.
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