Too Tired Every Day? You Might Have Sleep Apnea

Many people don't think that a dentist can handle this condition, but in fact, a dentist trained in this specialty is in a very good position to do so. Problems with the tongue, jaw movement, facial structures, and airways can be easily detected, and handling sleep apnea can be simple.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

This is the most common type of sleep apnea. When there is an obstruction to the upper airway, it can cause breathing to stop for brief periods of time during the night. It's not uncommon for this to happen many, even hundreds of times in one night. If you sleep alone, you may not even be aware this is happening to you.

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Causes of Sleep Apnea

Some of the more typical causes of sleep apnea include:

  • Deviations in the structure of the face or airways
  • Tonsils or tongue that are enlarged
  • Too much tissue at the back of the throat
  • Muscles too weak to hold the airway open when sleeping
  • Obesity

Effects of Sleep Apnea

When your body does not get enough oxygen while sleeping, it takes a toll on the whole system. Associated complications that can occur include high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, weight gain, stroke, and heart attack. These are serious medical issues, and the sooner the cause is determined, the easier it is to handle.

Oral Appliance Therapy

If Dr. Chow has diagnosed you with sleep apnea, he will provide you with a custom-made plastic mouth guard to be worn at night. In many cases, this is very effective and a much better alternative to a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine, which flows oxygen into the throat via a mask worn during sleep. Many people never wear the CPAP because they complain the mask is too uncomfortable.

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Many patients are not even aware they suffer from sleep apnea, and it can be difficult to diagnose. Typical symptoms include chronic sleepiness and/or grogginess during the day, dry throat, and snoring. Additionally, the older you are and the more overweight you are, the more serious sleep apnea can be.

If you think you may suffer from sleep apnea, Dr. Chow can help determine if you do. He will send you home with a home monitoring kit and instructions, which will measure your heart rate and oxygen levels as you sleep. If Dr. Chow determines that you are suffering from sleep apnea, he will treat it with a custom fabricated mouth guard.

This device, which effectively changes how your tongue and lower jaw rest when you sleep, prevents the airway from being obstructed. This allows oxygen to flow in and out freely, the way it's supposed to. The result will be blissful, non-interrupted sleep, and being awake, alert, and energized the next day.

No More Sleep Apnea, and a New You

It can be a night and day difference when you are now able to sleep through the night, uninterrupted. The next day many patients feel alive and energized; this can be a completely new lifestyle for many people, with tremendous benefits. Dr. Chow's caring manner and deep desire to help his patients is evident in every treatment he performs. For the most caring and professional Thousand Oaks dentist, contact ModelSmile Dentistry.

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