Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder occurring when there is interrupted breathing during sleep. Patients with untreated sleep apnea stop breathing many times throughout episodes of sleep. This sometimes will happen hundreds of times per night.
There are three types of sleep apnea:
- Obstructive (OSA) – the most common type of sleep apnea. This type of sleep apnea occurs when the upper airway is blocked either partially or entirely during sleep. The diaphragm and chest muscles work harder during an apnea episode as the pressure increases to open the airway. Breathing usually resumes with a body jerk or even a gasp for air. These episodes can interfere with a night of restful sleep, reduce oxygen flow to vital organs, and even cause heart issues.
- Central – the airway is not blocked, but the brain fails to signal the muscles to breathe. This is due to an issue with the patient’s respiratory control center.
- Mixed – as the name suggests is a combination of both obstructive and central sleep apnea.
Who gets OSA in Las Vegas NV?
Obstructive sleep apnea is present in approximately 25% of men and almost 10% of women. It affects people of all ages, including babies and children. It is particularly prevalent in people over the age of forty and those who are overweight.
Specific physical characteristics are common in patients with this type of sleep apnea.
These characteristics include excessive weight, more significant than the average neck, and structural abnormalities reducing the upper airway diameter, such as nasal obstruction, a low-hanging soft palate, enlarged tonsils, or a small jaw with an overbite.
Causes Of Obstructive Sleep Apnea
A blockage of the airway causes OSA. This blockage happens when the soft tissue in the rear of the throat collapses during sleep.
Central sleep apnea is generally observed in patients with central nervous system dysfunction, including those with a stroke history or the presence of neuromuscular diseases. It is also common in patients with:
- Heart Failure
- Other forms of cardiac and pulmonary disease
Symptoms Of Obstructive Sleep Apnea
The initial signs of OSA are often noticed by the bed partner. Many affected report no sleep disturbances. The most common symptoms include:
- Sleepiness during daytime
- Restlessness during sleep
- Awakening suddenly with sensation of gasping or choking
- Dry mouth or sore throat upon awakening
- Difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness, or irritability
- Night sweats
- Sexual dysfunction
Symptoms in children can include:
- Academic Underachievement
- Sluggishness or sleepiness during the daytime
- Daytime mouth breathing and difficulty swallowing
- Inward movement of the ribcage when inhaling
- Unusual sleeping positions
- Excessive night sweating
Health Effects Of Obstructive Sleep Apnea
If left untreated, OSA can cause health issues, including:
- Congestive heart failure
- Heart attacks
What if I have been diagnosed with OSA In Las Vegas NV?
Typically, the standard sleep apnea treatment for treating OSA is a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. CPAP may not work for all patients.
Another option for apnea treatment is with an oral appliance. This appliance looks similar to a mouthguard.
- The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends oral appliances as the primary sleep apnea treatment for mild to moderate obstructive apnea and for patients with severe apnea who are unable to tolerate CPAP machine treatment.
A dental sleep apnea oral appliance (oral mandibular advancement devices) work by preventing the tongue from blocking the throat and advancing the lower jaw forward. These devices can be fabricated for mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea patients.
This oral appliance helps keep the airway open while sleeping. A well-trained dentist trained in dental sleep medicine will be able to help diagnose and treat your condition. Your dentist may refer you to a specialist for further study and monitoring.
Patients suffering from severe sleep apnea should always undergo medical testing with a sleep doctor.
Dental Oral Appliance Therapy Procedure
If Dr. Perrone determines you are a candidate for oral appliance therapy, she will undertake the following steps:
- Dental Impression of Teeth
- Fabrication Of Dental Appliance
- Fitting Of Appliance
Marielaina Perrone DDS will also give you detailed instructions on how to use and maintain your new appliance. Adjustments may be needed to ensure optimal fit and comfort.
It is typically recommended that you have another sleep study to ensure the new device is working as it should. Moderate sleep apnea patients should see a definite improvement.
Benefits Of Sleep Apnea Dental Appliance Therapy
- Improvement of Symptoms, including daytime sleepiness, moodiness, focus issues, and reduce or eliminate loud snoring.
- Avoid the use of CPAP treatment.
- Custom made oral appliance for increased comfort
- Easily Transportable
- No electricity needed
- Quiet When Using
- Resume Normal Breathing During Sleep
The risks of appliance therapy include:
- Changes In Bite
- Pain or discomfort in the jaw, teeth, and temporomandibular joint
- Loose teeth
- Excessive drooling while wearing a dental appliance
- Dry Mouth
Questions To Ask Las Vegas Dentist Marielaina Perrone DDS
- What does oral appliance therapy cost?
- Does medical or dental insurance cover this apnea therapy?
- How many visits required?
- Do I need to do a sleep study before and after?
- What s the longevity of the dental appliance?
- Can I eat and drink as normal?
Las Vegas dentist Marielaina Perrone DDS has undergone extensive training dealing with dental sleep medicine. These oral appliances can improve your sleep and your overall health. Call 702-458-2929 today to see if an oral appliance is right for you!
Marielaina Perrone, DDS, is a highly experienced and dedicated dental professional passionate about delivering exceptional patient care. With over 20 years of experience in the dental industry, Dr. Perrone is widely regarded as a leading authority in her field, with a reputation for providing innovative solutions and personalized care to her patients.