Do you often wake up feeling worse than when you went to bed? Is your mouth dry and your head aching…and you haven’t had a drop to drink? You might be suffering from sleep apnea. That’s right! You don’t have to be a certain age or weight to have sleep apnea – even kids have it – and it has been connected to all kinds of trouble from difficulty concentrating to sexual dysfunction. If you’d like to stop waking up feeling like you have been on a bender without any of the fun, read on!
What Causes Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea generally happens when the tongue and soft palate collapse onto the back of the throat. But what causes THAT to happen?
Relatively large tongue or tonsils when compared to the windpipe.
More than normally relaxed throat muscles.
Neck or head shape that constricts or reduces your airway size.
Control over muscles reduced due to aging
Obesity causing extra soft fat tissue to thicken the windpipe
Ultimately, obstructive sleep apnea is what its name says it is – the obstruction ( or constriction) of the airway.
Can You Help Treat My Sleep Apnea?
Many patients benefit from using a CPAP or Continuous Positive Airway Pressure machine. Unfortunately, some of our patients have found they can’t tolerate them for one reason or another. Sometimes they can’t sleep because of the noise. Other times they can’t stand the feeling of the forced air. Whatever the reason, if you can’t tolerate a CPAP machine or you would like to try something smaller and more comfortable, ask us about our oral appliance therapy.
We use the Thornton Adjustable Positioner® (TAP®), a custom adjustable oral appliance that is worn while sleeping. This soundless,portable and easy-to-wear appliance holds the lower jaw forward, preventing the tongue and the soft tissue of the throat from collapsing into the airway. Our patients are amazed at how much better they feel.
For more information about how Dr. Dr. Jeff Huisman can help his Holland patients with sleep apnea, call 855.599.5584 today!