Have you ever wondered if you have sleep apnea? The dangerous condition affects more than 18 million adults in the U.S., according to the National Sleep Foundation. Our Glendale, CA, dentists, Dr. Navasart Kazazian and Dr. Apel Keuroghlian at New Smile Dental Group, offer an effective sleep apnea treatment option that helps their patients breathe easier.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when you stop breathing while you're sleeping. Breathing pauses typically last for several seconds and occur multiple times during the night. Although short pauses might sound like a minor issue, the pauses deprive your brain of needed oxygen. Eventually, you may experience serious health issues due to chronic oxygen deprivation, such as diabetes, heart failure, heart attack, stroke, obesity, high blood pressure, and depression.
How can I tell if I have sleep apnea?
You may have sleep apnea if you notice one or more of these signs and symptoms:
- Snoring: Sleep apnea can cause you to snore very loudly at night.
- Sudden Waking: Do you jerk awake or suddenly wake up because you're gasping for air or choking? Although sudden waking can be annoying, it's very effective in restarting breathing.
- Fatigue: It's hard to sleep well when you wake up constantly during the night, even if you don't remember waking. If you have difficulty staying awake at work or school, sleep apnea may be to blame.
- Headaches: You may experience a headache nearly every morning if you have sleep apnea. The headache occurs due to oxygen deprivation and will gradually go away.
- Moodiness: Lack of sleep may make you feel moody and irritable.
What can I do about sleep apnea?
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines are usually the first treatment option offered if you've been diagnosed with sleep apnea. The machine forces a steady flow of air into your throat, preventing the throat from closing or your tongue from blocking your airway. Some people have difficulty adjusting to the CPAP mask or can't sleep due to the noise it makes.
Luckily, there is a more comfortable, low-tech treatment alternative. An oral appliance, offered by your Glendale dentist, can relieve your sleep apnea symptoms. The device holds your jaw forward, which keeps your airway open and prevents your tongue falling across your throat while you sleep.
Oral appliances provide an effective sleep apnea treatment option. If you're interested in learning if the appliance is right for you, call our Glendale, CA, dentists, Dr. Kazazian and Dr. Keuroghlian at New Smile Dental Group, at (818) 547-4398 to schedule an appointment.