Do you snore? Think you might have Obstructive Sleep Apnea? Treatment usually isn’t fun. Obstructive Sleep Apnea is primarily treated with a CPAP (continuing positive airway pressure) machine. CPAP machines are usually loud and bulky and while some people find tremendous relief with a CPAP, a significant number of patients can’t tolerate them.
Do you have any of the following symptoms?
- Daytime Sleepiness
- Chronic Fatigue
- Morning Headache
- Impaired Memory And Judgment
- Mood Disturbance
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea isn’t just snoring. This type of sleep apnea occurs when the tongue and soft palate collapse onto the back of the throat while you’re asleep. This blocks the upper airway, causing airflow to stop. When the oxygen level drops low enough, the brain moves out of deep sleep and you partially awaken. The airway then contracts and opens, causing the obstruction in the throat to clear. The flow of air starts again, usually with a loud gasp. When the airflow starts again, you move back into a deep sleep. Then the process repeats over and over and over again.
Sleep apnea’s real indicator is when snoring stops. When the snoring stops, so does your breathing. Sleep apnea can cause a person to stop breathing for periods of time, sometimes hundreds of times during the night and often for a minute or longer. This cessation of breathing can cause a variety of problems. The combination of low oxygen levels and disturbed, interrupted sleep is the major contributors to most of the ill effects that the sleep apnea patient suffers.
The Importance of Treatment
Obstructive Sleep Apnea causes daytime sleepiness, but many don’t realize that there are more serious problems associated with this disorder. Sleep apnea patients are much more likely to suffer from:
- Heart problems (heart attack, congestive heart failure, hypertension)
- A higher incidence of work related and driving related accidents
- High blood pressure
- Generalized inflammation
- Grinding of teeth
Dr. Huisman’s Alternative
To treat sleep apnea, Dr. Huisman can prescribe a special custom-made oral appliance, to gently and safely hold the mouth and throat in an open position during relaxed sleep and thus prevent snoring.
We use the Thornton Adjustable Positioner® (TAP®), a custom adjustable oral appliance that is worn while sleeping. The TAP® 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.
If you think you might have Sleep Apnea, give us a call and see what we can do for you!