Don't Let a Missing Tooth Hold You Back in Life

Sleep Apnea And How It Can Be Treated

by Wyatt Morgan

Sleep apnea can rob you of a good night's sleep and increase your likelihood of long-term health issues. The condition occurs when your body stops breathing at multiple intervals as you sleep. The disruptions in your sleep cycle can leave you feeling exhausted and irritated throughout your day. 

Here is some additional information about sleep apnea and how it can be treated.

Types of Sleep Apnea

There are two common types of sleep apnea. They include:

  • Central sleep apnea. This form of sleep apnea is relatively uncommon and occurs when the brain doesn't signal the diaphragm muscles to initiate breathing.
  • Obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type of the condition. It takes place when the soft tissues of the mouth collapse into the airway, blocking the flow of air. 

Causes of Sleep Apnea

People develop sleep apnea for a variety of reasons. The condition is more prevalent among people who are obese, have misaligned jawbones, consume alcohol before sleeping, or have structural abnormalities, such as a deviated septum.

Health Issues Linked to Sleep Apnea

Although intermittent breaks in your breathing throughout the night may seem insignificant, the poor quality of sleep can increase your susceptibility to mental issues, such as depression.

In addition, sleep apnea is associated with the onset of multiple systemic conditions, such as hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, strokes, and acid reflux.

Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea

Many people believe that the use of a CPAP machine is the only treatment available for sleep apnea. The machine, which must have a power source, releases a stream of air into the nasal and oral airways to stop the collapsing of soft tissues and encourage your body to continue breathing. Although effective, some people find CPAP machines uncomfortable, noisy, and cumbersome. 

One treatment option for sleep apnea that may not be as well-known is a sleep apnea dental appliance. Your dentist can prescribe an oral appliance that is customized to fit the unique contours of your mouth. The mouthpiece helps to hold the soft tissues of the oral cavity in position, preventing their collapse. 

The sleep apnea dental device is often preferred because it is portable, comfortable, and quiet. The appliance can be easily taken on trips and does not require a power source.

If you suffer from sleep apnea and would like to learn more about available sleep apnea dental appliances, contact a dental office such as Jerry C Hu DDS Family Dentistry LLC to schedule an appointment.