Does your significant other complain that your obnoxious snoring is keeping them up at night? Do you feel tired during the day? Do you awaken in the night gasping for air? These are all signs of sleep apnea. You may be surprised to learn that ninety percent of people who snore loudly actually have sleep apnea.
If this condition is left untreated, if can lead to serious and potentially life-threatening health problems including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and weight gain.
What is Sleep Apnea?
When you fall asleep, you are in a completely relaxed state. This includes your tongue. The term “apnea” denotes that something is obstructed. This deep relaxation actually causes the tongue to be so relaxed that it obstructs the airway. Then, when the soft tissues vibrate as you breathe, snoring is the result.
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea is when the airway becomes completely obstructed. This causes an interruption in breathing which disrupts sleep. Oxygen deprivation occurs and often causes you to gasp in order to catch your breath. This serious sleeping disorder interferes with healthy sleep patterns, so it is likely that you may feel fatigued and tired in the morning even though you have been in bed all night. Patients that participate in a sleep study are often surprised to see how many times they wake up in the night. In some cases there are hundreds of sleep interruptions each night.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
Dr. Flax uses a simple mandibular advancement appliance to treat your sleep apnea. Dr. Flax prefers the Herbst and SomnoMed appliances which are both very comfortable.
These dental appliances re-position the lower jaw into a more favorable position that keeps the breathing passageway open during sleep. For mild to moderate sleep apnea, this will usually solve the problem, restore normal breathing, and eliminate the snoring.
Schedule a Consultation
If you think you may be suffering from this sleep disorder, please request an appointment to schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Flax. During the consultation, he will spend ten minutes with you personally to answer your questions and gain a better understanding of your situation to see if you may be a candidate for a mandibular appliance. Flax Dental serves Atlanta, Sandy Springs and surrounding areas.