The Bethesda Dental Implant Center offers treatment for patients who snore or suffer from obstructive sleep apnea. We offer oral appliance therapy to help keep the airway open during sleep, promote adequate air intake, and prevent snoring.
Oral Appliance Therapy for Sleep Apnea
An oral appliance is usually the front-line treatment for patients with mild to moderate Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). Sleep apnea treatment is only effective when it is used. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is still the gold standard, however, it has a very poor acceptance rate because patients find it to be uncomfortable to wear during sleep.
When combined with behavioral measures such as weight loss or sleep position change, an oral appliance is highly effective for treating snoring and sleep apnea.
What is an Oral Appliance?
An oral appliance is a small, plastic device similar to a sports mouthguard or orthodontic retainer. There are many types of oral appliances, your dentist will choose the one most appropriate for your condition. The oral appliance will position the jaws and mouth correctly to prevent the collapse of the tongue and soft tissues in the back of the throat, keeping the airway open during sleep and promoting adequate air intake.
About Snoring & Sleep Apnea
While snoring might not seem like a major medical concern, it can be a sign of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), a potentially serious sleep breathing disorder. Patients who suffer from OSA actually stop breathing momentarily during sleep, depriving their organs of much-needed oxygen, and restart with a loud snore.
OSA has been linked to a greater risk of stroke, heart disease, and other physical health issues. Consequences of interrupted sleep can be daytime sleepiness, fatigue, memory loss, headaches, and high blood pressure. Learn more about snoring and sleep apnea.
Did you know…
- 50% of people who snore loudly have obstructive sleep apnea.
- OSA is the most common sleep-related breathing disorder.
- Patients with OSA can stop breathing up to 600 times a night.
- When you stop breathing, you deprive your brain and body of oxygen.
- If you suffer from OSA you make wake suddenly, gasping for air.
- OSA patients are at a higher risk for heart attack, depression, and strokes.
- You may wake up feeling tired even after a full night’s sleep.
- You may have sleep apnea if you suffer from constant headaches, snore loudly, or feel frequently fatigued.
Sleep Apnea FAQs
Are there any medications that can contribute to sleep apnea?
Yes. Some medications are known to interfere with sleep and your breathing reflex. Strong pain medications have been shown to cause irregular breathing. The most common types are sleeping pills, antidepressants, anticonvulsants, anti-diabetic drugs, short-acting beta-blockers, antihistamines, and tranquilizers. Always consult with your doctor before you stop taking any prescribed medication.
Does smoking contribute to sleep apnea?
Yes, smoking causes damage to your overall health. Studies have shown that smokers’ lung contributes to breathing complications during sleep. Smoking can increase your risk of developing Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), and increases the severity if you already have been diagnosed with sleep apnea.
Can I treat sleep apnea at home?
Yes, you can alleviate symptoms of sleep apnea at home, but may need medical intervention to rid yourself of Sleep Apnea. You can change your sleeping position, lose weight, quit smoking, and more. Give us a call today for more in-depth steps to help alleviate symptoms at home.
Sleep Apnea Consultation
Sleep apnea can only be diagnosed by a medical doctor. Our dental care team will conduct an exam and sleep apnea pre-screening to assess your sleep apnea symptoms. We will coordinate a sleep study with a sleep center in the Bethesda area for a full diagnosis. If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, we will create a treatment plan to improve your symptoms and deliver you more restful sleep.
If you suffer from snoring and sleep apnea in the Bethesda MD area, call (301) 200-5222, or request an appointment online for a sleep apnea pre-screening with Dr. Eskow.