Do You Have Sleep Apnea? Here's How To Treat It!
Bothered by snoring and sleeplessness in Nashville, TN? You are not alone. Sleep disruptions are common signs of sleep apnea, and your oral environment may be to blame. Nearly 25 million Americans are affected by sleep apnea, and the health risks are dangerous.
When Does Sleep Apnea Occur?
Sleep apnea can occur when muscles at the back of the throat are loose, the tongue is enlarged, or the jaw is too small, leading to airway blockage and breathing difficulty during sleep. This is also known as obstructive sleep apnea.
Common signs of sleep apnea can include:
- Teeth grinding
- Inflamed or bleeding gums
- Increased toothaches or cavity occurrences
- Daytime sleepiness
- Dry mouth
- Sore throat
- Morning headaches
What Happens If Sleep Apnea is Left Untreated?
If left untreated, sleep apnea symptoms such as teeth grinding may lead to gum, or periodontal, disease. If gum disease is left untreated, it can lead to a number of systemic health issues, including, diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.
How Sleep Apnea Can Be Treated in Nashville, TN
Talented dentists in Nashville, TN can help create a personalized plan to treat your sleep apnea.
The dentist may suggest getting a custom-made night guard to prevent nighttime teeth grinding, and reduce the chances of getting cavities, headaches, and jaw pain caused by the grinding.
The best treatment plan for you may even include specific oral devices, including mandibular advancement devices (MADs), and tongue-retaining mouthpieces. Both devices are fit to look like athletic mouth guards and are placed over the upper and lower sets of teeth. Holding the lower jaw and tongue slightly forward, it keeps the throat tissues from blocking airways.
What a Typical Sleep Apnea Treatment Process Looks Like
A trusted dentist will first start you off with a custom-made snore guard. These guards are devices worn at night that keep the mouth slightly open. This position fosters a more open airway with less frequency of snoring or blockages.
For many people, snore guards that are worn while asleep solve most, if not all, of their sleep apnea issues.