Sleep apnea, a condition which is often characterized by snoring and breathing pauses during sleep, can be treated with advanced treatment options here at Cornerstone Dental. Patients who suffer from sleep apnea are not only being prevented from getting a full night’s rest – they are also being exposed to serious risks to their overall health. Fatigue, headache, high blood pressure, and many other symptoms caused by sleep apnea can lead to a number of life-threatening health problems if the condition is left untreated.
Dr. Arlene O’Brien is not only an experienced restorative and cosmetic dentist, but is also a member of The American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine. She has made it a a top priority to pursue continuing education and keep abreast of the latest advances in dentistry, and most pointedly, of research and developments in sleep medicine. Recent advancements in this field suggest that ensuring those who suffer from sleep apnea experience normal breathing patterns during sleep can significantly reduce risks posed by this common condition. With custom-designed orthotic appliances, such as the one pictured above, and other options, our doctors can help you breathe more easily and obtain a healthier, more peaceful night’s sleep.
What is Sleep Apnea?
During sleep, muscles in the mouth and throat relax and expand, ultimately causing air passages to narrow. Once the airway closes to a certain point, breaths can be missed – in some cases, an individual can experience a pause in breathing for as long as 10 seconds or more. This condition, sleep apnea, is also responsible for snoring. While snoring is typically the most noticeable symptom of sleep apnea, symptoms like breathing pauses may not be noticed at all. This is why it is very important for people who suffer from fatigue, headaches, restless sleep, and snoring to be evaluated for sleep apnea.
Health Risks from Sleep Apnea
Since many symptoms of sleep apnea cause your breathing to slow or even stop for extended periods of time, sleep apnea can have serious consequences to your health. Some of the risks of sleep apnea include:
- Sudden cardiac death / heart attack
- Congestive heart failure
- Gastric reflux disease
- Mental impairment – loss of memory, reduced cognitive function
- Anxiety, mood swings, stress, depression
- Less motor control
Sleep Apnea Treatment Options
This field of dentistry offers many advanced options to keep a positive airflow through your breathing passages and reduce health risks caused by sleep apnea. Dr. Beckwith and Dr. O’Brien will give you a comprehensive evaluation at your initial consultation. After a sleep study has been performed and it is determined you are suffering from sleep apnea, Dr. Beckwith and Dr. O’Brien can have a special orthotic appliance created that is designed to keep your airway open for normal breathing throughout the night and a restful night’s sleep. Cornerstone Dental works with accredited laboratories that are respected throughout the dental field for crafting the most precise, comfortable, and naturally-fitting orthotic appliances possible. These oral appliances can help you reduce snoring, improve your breathing, and reduce many risks to your health that can be caused by sleep apnea.
Contact Cornerstone Dental for More Information
If you would like more information on sleep apnea and the treatments we offer, please contact Cornerstone Dental today. A member of our team will be happy to speak with you.