What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects millions of people throughout the world. Sleep apnea is characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep, which can last anywhere from a few seconds to minutes and can occur multiple times throughout the night. These pauses are caused by obstructions or blockages in the airway, resulting in reduced or even completely restricted airflow. As a result, the brain and body are deprived of oxygen, leading to disrupted sleep patterns and potential health risks. Because of these disrupted sleep patterns, sleep apnea can affect your quality of life as sufferers are deprived of much needed rest.
Causes of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea comes in two main forms: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and central sleep apnea (CSA). OSA is the more common type and occurs when the muscles in the throat relax, causing the airway to become narrow or completely blocked. CSA is a less common type of sleep apnea and happens when the brain fails to send signals to the muscles that control breathing during sleep. Here at Oak Hills Dentistry, located south of The Woodlands, Texas, Dr. Reagan Smith focuses on working with and treating patients with OSA.
Health Risks of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea, if left untreated, can lead to a myriad of other health problems. Chronic sleep deprivation resulting from sleep apnea can lead to daytime fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and can significantly impact your quality of life. Some of the various health risks associated with sleep apnea include:
- Increased risk of high blood pressure
- Increased risk of heart attack
- Increased risk of stroke
- Potential for obesity
- Heightened risk of diabetes
- Potential to lead to, or worsen, heart failure
- Severe effects on mood, potentially leading to depression or anxiety
Evaluation and Consultations
The goal of sleep apnea treatment is to restore regular breathing patterns during sleep, ensuring that the brain and body receive enough oxygen, improving restfulness and quality of life. While lifestyle changes can often help, one of the best treatments for mild to moderate sleep apnea is correcting the positioning of the airway through a mouthguard, also called Oral Appliances or Sleep Appliances.
Though sleep apnea is diagnosed by a medical doctor, with Dr. Smith’s expertise and our advanced diagnostic technology, we’re equipped to thoroughly evaluate your condition and determine an effective treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. Our state-of-the-art diagnostic tools include a microTENS unit, which can relax the muscles of the jaw and neck to establish a physiologically ideal jaw position, as well as recording EMGs to measure muscle activity.
Dr. Smith works closely with each patient to determine the best treatment approach based on their individual needs and preferences.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
After the evaluation, Dr. Smith will offer the best of several available solutions which include the physiologic night orthotic (PNO) made by Williams Laboratory, the Herbst Appliance from Dandy Labs, and the Dorsal Appliance from Dandy Labs.
Depending on the solution, Dr. Smith will either use the Trios 3Shape digital imager or manual impressions to help make your sleep appliance.
Don’t let sleep apnea control your life. Take the first step towards better sleep and improved health by contacting us today. We’re eagerly waiting to be your partners on your journey to a restful night’s sleep. Contact us today to set up your sleep apnea consultation. We promise personalized care and a solution designed to meet your unique needs.
Long Term Benefits
Treating sleep apnea has numerous long term benefits that go beyond just improving sleep quality. By effectively managing sleep apnea, patients may experience:
- Better Sleep Quality: With proper treatment, patients can enjoy a full night’s rest without interruptions due to breathing pauses.
- Improved Daytime Functioning: As a result of better sleep, patients may feel more alert and focused during the day
- Reduced Health Risks: Proper treatment of sleep apnea can significantly diminish the risk of associated health complications like heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure.
- Enhanced Mood: With improved quality of sleep, patients often report a decrease in feelings of depression or anxiety, leading to an overall better mood and outlook.
- Weight Control: Improved sleep can help regulate hormones that control appetite, assisting in weight management.
- Increased Energy: Uninterrupted sleep often translates to higher energy levels throughout the day, allowing patients to engage more in physical activities and enjoy a more active lifestyle.
- Cognitive Improvement: Resolving sleep apnea can enhance cognitive function, improving memory, and concentration abilities.
Remember, the journey to improved health begins with a simple step. Don’t let sleep apnea dictate your life. Contact our office today and take the first step towards a healthier, happier you.
Dr. Reagan Smith Can Help
If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of mild to moderate sleep apnea or even severe sleep apnea, it’s essential to seek help from a qualified provider like Dr. Smith. Here at Oak Hills Dentistry, Dr. Smith is dedicated to providing effective solutions for sleep apnea and other sleep disorders.
Dr. Smith’s practice in Spring, Texas offers sleep apnea treatment services for patients of all ages. With his expertise and advanced technology, he can accurately evaluate and recommend the most suitable treatment plan for each patient.