When trying to improve your sleep, the dentist may be the last person you think to go to. However, there are some specific nighttime sleep habits that a dentist can address. Sleep apnea is a common yet very serious sleep disorder that can be effectively treated by our dentists at Modern Dental & Implants.
Signs of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that causes breathing to repeatedly stop and start during sleep. Some common signs and symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Loud snoring: Snoring is a common symptom of sleep apnea, and it is often loud and disruptive.
- Gasping or choking: Sleep apnea can cause sudden gasping or choking sounds during sleep as breathing resumes after a pause.
- Pauses in breathing: People with sleep apnea may experience pauses in breathing during sleep, which can last for several seconds or longer.
- Daytime sleepiness: Sleep apnea can cause excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and difficulty staying awake during the day.
- Morning headaches: Sleep apnea can cause headaches upon waking up in the morning.
- Dry mouth or sore throat: People with sleep apnea may experience dry mouth or sore throat upon waking up in the morning.
- Difficulty concentrating: Sleep apnea can cause difficulty concentrating, memory problems, and mood changes.
- High blood pressure: Sleep apnea can lead to high blood pressure and other cardiovascular problems.
- Restless sleep: People with sleep apnea may toss and turn during the night, and they may frequently wake up to urinate.
It’s important to note that not everyone with sleep apnea will experience all of these symptoms. If you suspect that you may have sleep apnea, it’s important to get a proper diagnosis of your sleep condition.
What Does Sleep Apnea Have to Do with Your Dental Health?
The position of your jaw or tongue during sleep can block or open your airway and contribute to sleep apnea episodes. Therefore, if you are not able or willing to tolerate a CPAP machine to treat your sleep apnea, a dentist can offer a nighttime oral appliance to help prevent sleep apnea as well as the associated snoring or dangerous pauses in breathing that can occur multiple times per night. Oral appliances are custom-made devices that fit over the teeth like a mouthguard. They are designed to keep the airway open by repositioning the jaw or tongue during sleep.
To learn if you qualify for sleep apnea treatment from Modern Dental & Implants, please call our Lodi, CA office. We care about your smile and your quality of sleep!