Window rattler, snore-a-saurus rex, log sawer, freight train, he who sleeps alone – very often, the diagnosis of sleep apnea begins with complaints about snoring. While it can be one indication of a sleep issue, it’s not the only one. Excessive sleepiness during the day, morning headaches or sore throat/dryness, feeling foggy in your thinking, and irritability can also signal an issue. And if the snorer has episodes where breathing is interrupted or requires the sleeper to “catch his breath,” it’s a good idea to talk to your dentist about the possibility of sleep apnea.
Dental devices can help.
At Today’s Dental, we’ve made sleep related breathing disorders part of our ongoing practice – especially obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). In fact, our dentists and staff undergo additional specialty training to address these issues. Based on our screening, we may refer you to your physician for diagnosis and testing.
If you’ve already been diagnosed with OSA, your dentist is instrumental in treating your condition with oral appliance therapy. This is also a great option if you’re not able to tolerate a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) overnight.
For children experiencing obstructive sleep apnea, your dentist can fit an oral appliance. Over time, we’re also able to study and measure ongoing growth and changes that can improve the condition or identify other opportunities to alleviate the problem.
The right device for you.
There are several types of devices that your Today’s Dental dentist may talk to you about depending on your specific needs. At first glance, they look like a mouthguard that you might wear to protect your teeth during sports. However, they’re equipped with special features to address the specific issues of your “obstruction” as part of your obstructive sleep apnea.
- Mandibular repositioning device – one of the most common types of devices, it moves the lower jaw forward and down slightly to keep your airway open.
- Tongue retaining device – just like the name says, it holds you tongue in place while you sleep so it doesn’t block your airway.
Work with people you trust.
When it comes to successfully treating your obstructive sleep apnea, your relationship with your dentist works to your advantage. For starters, we have the state-of-the-art tools and expertise to create a precision fit oral appliance to wear while sleeping. What’s more, your twice yearly visits to your Today’s Dental dentist allow you to share your experiences and receive continuous care and advice that enables you to address concerns or symptoms you may be experiencing.
Today’s Dental is happy to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team to improve your sleep, and your overall health through better rest. Learn more when you call Today’s Dental to schedule your appointment online (LINK) or call 402-333-1120.