Do you snore loudly at night? Do you wake up gasping for air or choking? Are you tired during the day and often feel drowsy at work or while driving? You may have sleep apnea, which is a serious sleep disorder requiring diagnosis and treatment as soon as possible.
Symptoms of sleep apnea include loud snoring at night, frequent waking, insomnia, morning headaches, daytime drowsiness, and a lack of ability to concentrate.
Lifestyle choices may be contributing to or increasing your risk of sleep apnea. The following changes may help to mitigate the symptoms of sleep apnea:
- Sleep on your side - some people with mild sleep apnea experience a lessening of symptoms when they sleep on their side instead of flat on their backs.
- Lose weight - this can be the most important action you could take to cure or drastically reduce your sleep apnea symptoms if you are overweight.
- Avoid alcohol - the upper airway muscles relax and cause frequent waking with alcohol use.
- Quit smoking - cigarette smoking worsens swelling in the upper airway, which makes apnea and snoring worse.
The most common treatment for sleep apnea is the continuous positive airway pressure device (CPAP). The CPAP mask fits over the mouth and/or nose and gently blows air to keep the airway open during sleep. The CPAP mask can also be quite uncomfortable to use and wear all night long.
We offer a custom-made dental appliance which replaces your CPAP machine. It gently aligns the tongue and jaw to ensure an open airway, which allows natural airflow into your lungs as you sleep. Our patients report that this appliance is significantly more comfortable than a CPAP, easier to use and wear, which means better sleep.
Sleep apnea is a serious condition that should not be ignored. Our goal is to make the treatment as comfortable and effective as possible. Contact our office to make an appointment for a sleep consultation today!