Treating Sleep Apnea Using Oral Appliances

Treating Sleep Apnea Using Oral Appliances

Nov 01, 2020

Sleep apnea is a sleep condition characterized by interrupted breathing. If the sleep apnea is left untreated, you might experience episodes of shortness of breath many times over the night.

There are three types of sleep apnea, including obstructive, central, and mixed. However, obstructive apnea is the most common among the three. Obstructive apneas occur when your upper airway is blocked partly or wholly when you are sleeping.

During obstructive sleep apnea episodes, your chest and diaphragm tend to work harder to unblock the airway. When breathing resumes, if someone is watching, they might observe loud gasping and body jerking. Sometimes the sleep apnea in Laguna Beach can cause snoring.

Who Can Experience Obstructive Sleep Apneas?

Obstructive sleep apnea is more common among men than women. However, obstructive sleep apneas can affect people of all ages, especially ones who are overweight. Also, people with the following body traits are at high risk of developing obstructive sleep apneas:

  • Large neck
  • Excess weight
  • Low-hanging palate
  • Enlarged tonsils
  • Small jaw with an overbite

The cause of obstructive sleep apnea is blockage of the airway when your soft tissue on the rear of your throat collapses.

How to Know if You Have Sleep Apnea

When you have obstructive sleep apnea, you might experience the following symptoms:

  • Snoring even when taking a nap
  • Fatigue and sleepiness during the day
  • Restlessness during sleep
  • Sudden episodes of awakening due to gasping and body jerking
  • Dry or sore mouth upon waking up
  • Trouble concentrating, irritability, and forgetfulness
  • Sweating profusely at night
  • Headaches and migraines when you wake up

Children with obstructive sleep apnea can have learning disorders and sometimes wet the bed. Also, they might have unusual sleeping postures such as sleeping with their hands on their knees or the neck extended.

How to Test for Sleep Apnea

You might not be able to explain the symptoms of sleep apnea since apneas happen while you are asleep. Therefore, before receiving sleep apnea treatment in Laguna Beach, CA, the dentist will need your family to observe your sleeping patterns.

Other tests that your specialist can use to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea include:

Polysomnography

The test is a sleep observation where your specialist hooks you up to equipment that monitors your heart rate, lung, and brain activity, limb movements, breathing patterns, and blood oxygen levels.

The doctor might recommend a full night or a split night study. During a split night study, if you are diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, the doctor might wake you up and give you continuous airway pressure. Once you recover, the doctor will let you sleep for the second half of the night.

How to Get Rid of Sleep Apnea Using Oral Appliances

If your condition is mild or moderate and can’t stand using a CPAP, the specialist can recommend an oral appliance for obstructive sleep apnea. Below are some of the mouth devices your specialist can recommend when seeking sleep apnea treatment in Laguna Beach, CA:

Mandibular Advancement Device

Mandibular advancement devices resemble mouthguards used in sports. The mouth devices snap over the lower and upper jaws and ease the lower jaw forward. Some of the mouth devices have metal hinges that help with easing the jaw and are adjustable.

Tongue Retaining Devices

While sleeping, you can use the tongue retaining device to keep your airway open. If you have moderate obstructive sleep apnea, the splint-like mouth device can help you improve your sleep and reduce the frequency of loud snoring.

Lifestyle and Home Remedies for Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Even with the use of oral appliances to treat obstructive sleep apnea, you might need to make some lifestyle changes and try some home remedies for satisfactory results. Some of the home remedies include:

  • Lose weight if you are obese to relieve constrictions on your airway
  • Aerobic and strength training exercises
  • Avoid using alcohol, and medications such as antidepressants and sleeping pills
  • Keep your nasal cavity open, while you are asleep
  • Sleep on your side or stomach, to avoid blockage of the airway

Sleep Apnea Treatment Near Me

Do you need sleep apnea treatments in Laguna Beach, CA or the surrounding areas such as Shaw’s Cove, Glenneyre St, Park Ave, Laguna Hills, Newport Coast, Newport Beach, Dana Point and Corona Del Mar? At Laguna Family dentistry, we provide all the sleep apnea treatments you need, and you will get to enjoy the results.