Snoring and Sleep Apnea
Is Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea affecting your Health and Quality of Life?
The quality of your sleep has a dramatic impact on your health, well-being and overall quality of life.
- Does your bed partner report loud and/or regular snoring?
- Do you gasp or stop breathing while sleeping?
- Do you feel tired or groggy upon awakening, or do you wake with headaches?
- Are you frequently tired during non-sleeping hours?
- Do you fall asleep sitting, reading, watching tv, or driving?
- Do you often have problems with memory or concentration?
Obstructive sleep apnea is a serious and lifelong medical condition that affects between 18 and 30 million adults over 18 in the US; with approximately 90% of them undiagnosed. Snoring and obstructive sleep apnea disrupt your sleep and increase your risk of severe health problems. When left untreated, sleep apnea often causes excessive daytime sleepiness or fatigue, as well as morning headaches and memory loss. Sleep apnea also is a threat to your safety as it increases your risk of drowsy driving and workplace accidents. Untreated sleep apnea raises your risk for serious health problems:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Weight gain
- Chronic acid reflux
Treating Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Snoring is a common warning sign for obstructive sleep apnea. Prior to treatment, you should be diagnosed by a board-certified sleep medicine physician. If you have snoring without sleep apnea, your doctor should give you a prescription for an oral sleep appliance. If you have sleep apnea, your doctor will discuss treatment options with you.
The most common treatment for sleep apnea is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy. The CPAP machine keeps your airway open by providing forced air through flexible tubing. CPAP therapy requires you to wear a mask as you sleep. Although CPAP therapy is effective, some people are unable to adhere to it.
Research shows that oral appliance therapy is an effective treatment option for snoring and mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. An oral appliance is worn in the mouth only while you sleep and fits like a sports mouth guard or an orthodontic retainer. Oral appliances support your jaw in a forward position to help maintain an open upper airway. Many patients consider a sleep apnea appliance to be more comfortable to wear than a CPAP mask. Oral appliances also are quiet, portable and easy to care for. If you are unable to tolerate CPAP therapy or prefer an alternate treatment, please ask your doctor to consider giving you a prescription for a custom sleep apnea appliance, fabricated by your dentist. Many oral appliances have received FDA clearance. Dr. Pryzgoda will recommend the device that is best for you.