Sleep Apnea and Snoring Treatment in Ocala, FL
Recent years have provided the field of dentistry with the knowledge and technology to treat obstructive sleep apnea. Weldon Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry of Ocala is proud to offer the residents of Ocala and surrounding areas with sleep apnea and snoring treatment. Below we have included some detailed information regarding sleep apnea. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact us any time and we are happy to schedule a consultation.
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea is an extremely common breathing disorder. The American Sleep Apnea Association estimates that 22 million Americans suffer from this disease. Apnea in Greek means “without breath”. Essentially sleep apnea is characterized by cessations in breathing during sleep. There are three types of sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is by far the most prevalent form. Fortunately obstructive sleep apnea is treatable and new advances especially in the dental field have made it much more comfortable to treat.
Who is at Risk?
Obstructive sleep apnea can be found in any segment of the population. Anatomical variations such as a narrowed throat form or enlarged tonsils can cause this. That said, the people that are most at risk are overweight males that are over 40. The enlarged neck can also contribute to this problem significantly.
How Would I Know if I Have Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
There are several signs and symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea. Often it is found that a bed partner can offer important information regarding the symptoms. Here are a few symptoms:
- Chronic morning and daytime fatigue that is caused by the lack of sleep
- Snoring is another symptom of sleep apnea. This is caused by the air squeezing past the partial blockage and creating the snoring sound. This is common in those that are overweight but can happen to anyone.
- Morning headaches, awakening with a dry mouth, or a sore throat can also be signs of sleep apnea.
- Loud snoring as well as audible breaks between breathing during sleep
- Abrupt awakenings that occur along with a feeling of being out of breath
- High blood pressure
- Mood changes, irritability, and difficulty concentrating during the day
What are some Dangers Caused by Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea has been shown to contribute to major systemic issues. An increase in the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, and diabetes can all be attributed to sleep apnea. It can also lead to irregular heartbeats. High blood pressure is prevalent in patients who suffer from sleep apnea. Due to the lack of proper inbound breaths, the body does not receive an adequate amount of oxygen. As a result the heart has to work extra hard to make up for this. Obstructive sleep apnea truly can be a silent killer. Recent research at Harvard Medical School has determined that men with severe obstructive sleep apnea were 3 times as likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease than those who had severe sleep apnea that were receiving treatment. Finally, the fatigue caused during the day can increase the risk of work-related or driving accidents.
How Can Your Dentist Treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Traditionally the CPAP has been the treatment of choice for obstructive sleep apnea. The CPAP essentially forces air into the airway to allow for delivery of adequate oxygen. The major problem that causes patient dissatisfaction with the CPAP is that it is uncomfortable. This has lead to patients not using the device and as a result continuing to be in danger for the problems that sleep apnea brings. At Weldon Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry of Ocala, we utilize the oral device that will gently open the airway so adequate intake can be realized. SomnoDent® is one of the custom appliances we offer. There have been 14 independent studies over 12 years of research that have demonstrated the efficacy and significant clinical benefits of SomnoDent.
Sleep Apnea FAQ’s
Are you still curious about sleep apnea in Ocala? You’re in the right place! We want to make it easy for all our patients to get the information they need, which is why we’ve included the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about sleep apnea. Remember, if you’d like to know anything specific, be sure to contact our office to speak with one of our friendly team members. Otherwise, read on to satisfy your curiosity.
How Can I Set Myself Up for Successful Sleep?
Getting a good night’s sleep isn’t always just about your sleep disorder. In fact, your resting conditions can definitely play a role in how well you sleep. Typically, you’ll want to sleep in a cool, dark environment. Do you like air movement and a little white noise? Put a fan on! You should also be mindful of what you consume. Try to avoid drinking caffeinated beverages after 2:00pm because they could keep you up. Plus, you can meditate and exercise, which not only sets you up for good sleep, but it can minimize some of the sleep apnea symptoms like weight gain and moodiness.
Why Should I Choose an Oral Appliance Over a CPAP Machine?
For years, the CPAP machine has been the standard for sleep apnea treatment. However, the setup, hassle, and irritation that it can cause often leads to patients who stop using their CPAP altogether. On the other hand, an oral appliance from Dr. Weldon is incredibly easy to use, comfortable to wear, and it can fit in your pocket! That means traveling is simple—you won’t have any restless nights thanks to your oral appliance. The best part is that there is no set up required—just pop in your oral appliance and enjoy your night of sleep.
Is It Easy to Tell if I Have Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea affects millions of Americans and there are many symptoms we listed above that characterize it. Unfortunately, because this problem occurs at night, it’s estimated that around 80% of cases go untreated simply due to the fact that most people don’t know it’s occurring. That’s why you and your sleep partner need to be aware of the common warning signs like loud snoring and waking up gasping for breath. As soon as you notice that something is off with your sleep, call our dentist in Ocala so we can order a test for a proper diagnosis.
What is Sleep Paralysis?
Sleep paralysis is an issue that can occur during your sleep cycle, but it’s typically associated with narcolepsy. It’s a period where you’re not able to perform voluntary movements—either at sleep or when you wake up. This may also be referred to as isolated sleep paralysis, hynogogic or hypnopompic paralysis, familial sleep paralysis, and more. While far less common than sleep apnea, this disorder is still an issue to be aware of so you can get the best quality sleep.
If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to contact our office!