Obstructive sleep apnea affects about 25 million people in the United States, and these numbers are on the rise. While the condition can certainly wreak havoc on your ability to get a good night’s sleep, it can also lead to serious health problems like heart disease. At Bethesda Chevy Chase Dental Care, the team of dental professionals understands the effect that sleep apnea can have on their Bethesda, Maryland, patients and provides effective solutions that help everyone sleep easier. To address your sleep apnea, please call or use the online booking feature.
In the most general terms, sleep apnea is a condition in which your airways continuously close while you sleep, prompting your brain to wake you throughout the night. And this can happen dozens of times an hour, which means neither you nor your bedmate is getting the sleep you need.
Of the several types of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea accounts for the lion’s share of diagnoses. With obstructive sleep apnea, the soft tissues in the back of your throat relax to the point where they block your airway. When this happens, the lack of oxygen causes your brain to rouse you time and again so that you can clear your airways.
Sleep apnea, as the name suggests, happens while you’re sleeping, so you might not even be aware of the problem. If you have a bedmate or people who sleep close by, they are often the first to report the issue, which can sound like sporadic snoring.
As well, you can feel fatigued and groggy throughout the day since you’re not getting the restorative sleep you need. While you might not remember waking throughout the night, the repeated arousals prevent deep sleep — for you and anyone nearby.
Aside from the obvious lack of sleep, this condition can have a much larger — and serious — effect on your health. The complications that can develop due to sleep apnea include:
As you can see, this list represents more than just minor side effects, which is why seeking treatment for your sleep apnea at Bethesda Chevy Chase Dental Care is a good idea.
The team at Bethesda Chevy Chase Dental Care approaches sleep apnea using oral devices that help reposition certain areas of your mouth so that your airways remain open throughout the night.
For example, a mandibular advancement device (MAD) is an appliance that eases your lower jaw forward while you sleep. Your dentist custom designs the MAD to your mouth, which fits easily over your teeth like a mouthguard.
Your dentist might also recommend a tongue retaining device, which holds your tongue forward while you sleep.
To learn more about your treatment options for sleep apnea, call Bethesda Chevy Chase Dental Care or use the online scheduling tool to set up a consultation.