If you’re dealing with obstructive sleep apnea and want to find a better way to get a good night’s sleep without your CPAP machine, Dr. Beata A. Carlson and her associates can help. During a sleep apnea consultation at our Clearwater, FL, we can fit you for a Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD) to open your airway without all the noise and discomfort of a CPAP.
Causes and effects of obstructive sleep apnea
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a sleep disorder that causes people to stop breathing while they sleep periodically. Cases can range from mild to severe, resulting in as many as 30 apnea events per hour. Patients who suffer from OSA may not realize it for many years. The interruptions to sleep they experience cause drastic results to their health, including hypertension, fatigue, headaches, anxiety, and depression.
Issues with your airway cause OSA; as you sleep, your throat muscles relax, and your throat becomes obstructed. Your body will briefly wake up, and your airway will open again, though you usually won’t remember the next morning. The more events you go through each night, the lower your blood oxygen saturation drops, which dramatically affects your body. OSA is associated with excess weight, sleep aids, alcohol, smoking, and narrow airways.
The typical treatment for OSA is a CPAP machine, which uses compressed air at a fixed pressure to force your airway open when you are asleep. However, many patients and their partners find it difficult to sleep with the noise from the CPAP machine, and the mask makes it harder to get comfortable when as you toss and turn in the night.
Using a MAD for sleep apnea
Dr. Beata A. Carlson and Associates offer patients an alternative to a CPAP machine that fits snuggly in your mouth and doesn’t require electricity to work. A MAD is an oral appliance similar to a sports guard that works by pushing your lower jaw forward and keeping your tongue pressed against the top of the mouth the way it should be. This will help keep your airway open and prevent your airway from collapsing at night.
While the MAD itself doesn’t necessarily prevent all sleep apnea episodes, it can help strengthen the muscles that hold your jaw and throat in place. After a few nights, patients usually notice a dramatic difference in how they feel each morning. Combined with other interventions, such as weight loss and smoking cessation, you’ll be able to achieve more profound, more restful sleep. Dr. Beata A. Carlson and Associates can improve your oral health issues that contribute to your sleep apnea in many cases.
How your oral health affects your airway
Proper oral resting posture is crucial to maintaining an open airway. However, when your teeth don’t fit together correctly, or your jaw is out of alignment, it can shrink your airway and make it harder to breathe at night when you’re lying down in bed. While some people may have dental crowding or malocclusion from their teeth and jaw developed, other people may create issues caused by tooth decay or gum disease.
Dr. Beata A. Carlson and her associates can treat these issues by providing realistic, mercury-free restorations to help your teeth rest together the way they were meant to be. She may also recommend orthodontics to address jaw alignment issues and straighten crooked teeth to open up your airway and decrease your risk of developing snoring or sleep apnea. Dr. Beata A. Carlson and her associates can work with you to improve your resting oral posture by recommending changes in your diet and suggest exercises to help you retain your jaw and tongue’s optimal position.
Natural and Cosmetic Dentistry for a healthier smile and body
Sleep apnea is a complex issue that can have life-threatening consequences if left untreated. Dr. Beata A. Carlson and Associates can work with you and your doctor to find the right combination of interventions to improve your condition and help you restore your health.
Their focus on holistic dentistry means she considers the health of your whole body when addressing dental concerns. The treatments and lifestyle changes that improve your oral health may also decrease your risk for other issues linked to poor oral health, such as heart disease and Alzheimer’s. Contact Natural and Cosmetic Dentistry in Clearwater, FL today at 727-888-6523 to schedule a consultation for sleep apnea service.