Sleep apnea is a medical condition that can affect your oral health, and your overall well being. A chronic and progressive sleep disorder, sleep apnea can cause serious complications and should be treated as soon as possible. Obstructive sleep apnea goes largely underdiagnosed and is a growing health concern in the United States.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea is caused by the obstruction of the airway during sleep. Soft tissues collapse in the back of the mouth blocking the normal oxygen flow to the rest of the body.
Patients with sleep apnea can wake suddenly up to 500 times a night, gasping for air. Sleep is repeatedly interrupted and the body cut off from its oxygen source. Patients may feel chronically fatigued, experience headaches, or feel like it is hard to focus. Long term, patient’s risk factors increase for developing heart attacks, high blood pressure, and strokes.
It may difficult for patients to notice that they are experiencing obstructive sleep apnea at first as it occurs during sleep. Many patients have no memory of waking during the night. While all patients, of all ages, are at risk of developing sleep apnea, certain demographics are at a higher risk. Knowing your risk factors and the symptoms of sleep apnea can help patients seek the treatment early.
If one or more of these risk factors apply to you, let your dentist know that you may be experiencing sleep apnea. A simple sleep study can determine if you have OSA and could help you find the treatment you need to protect your health.
Male (more prone than women)
Patients over 40
Large neck diameter
Family history of OSA
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
If you notice changes in the way you feel when you wake up or experience any of these symptoms on a regular basis, let Dr. Ahrabi know.
Waking gasping for air
Dr. Ahrabi works with local sleep specialists for the diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Patients will undergo a comprehensive sleep study. Your doctors will be able to determine the cause of your disruptive sleep patterns using modern technology to monitor sleep activity.
The sleep study is noninvasive, and most patients can complete the sleep study from the comfort of their own homes. Accurate diagnosis allows Dr. Ahrabi to prescribe the most precise treatment possible.
Dr. Ahrabi offers personalized treatment plans for patients with OSA. Our Oakton Dental Center also provides cosmetic and restorative dental procedures to repair the health and function of the jaw, teeth, and gums that may have been damaged by untreated sleep apnea.
LVI Global- trained dentist Dr. Ahrabi offers comprehensive and personalized treatment for patients suffering from sleep apnea. Treating sleep apnea can improve a patients quality of life and protect their long term health. Patients are often amazed at how an oral sleep appliance can positively impact their daily personal and professional lives.
Oral Sleep Appliance Therapy for OSA
Oral sleep appliances are a more discreet alternative to the traditional CPAP machine. Many patients prefer the oral sleep appliance and enjoy positive results. Dr. Ahrabi will custom fabricate an oral sleep appliance that will fit snugly and comfortably in the mouth. The appliance is worn during sleep and helps to keep the airway open.
The appliance is designed to reposition the teeth and jaw to prevent the soft tissues from collapsing, blocking the airway. The oral sleep appliance allows patients to breathe normally all night long so that they may remain asleep and receive the proper flow of oxygen.
ORal sleep appliances can help to protect the teeth and gums from future damage. The device allows patients to enjoy healthy sleep patterns that can improve their concentration and alleviate chronic pain symptoms such as headaches and jaw pain.