Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that can easily go undetected or be misdiagnosed. However, our Calgary dental team is aware of how severe the condition is, and we’re here to help you find relief.
By coordinating care with local sleep medicine specialists, Dr. Adatia can help our patients achieve a better night’s rest with effective treatments.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when an obstruction of your airway causes you to stop breathing while you’re sleeping. As a result, patients stop breathing for a range of several seconds to a couple of minutes. When this happens, patients usually make choking sounds or snore when they’re trying to breathe.
When suffering from an episode, people’s bodies and brains become deprived of oxygen. To kickstart their breathing, the brain will startle awake — a warning that they need oxygen. Many people don’t even remember waking up at night.
Sleep apnea creates a constant battle of sleeping and waking that can quickly impact your ability to get a decent night of sleep. Depending on the severity of the condition, patients may be forced awake up to 50 times an hour.
Types of Sleep Apnea
- Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA): OSA is the mildest and most common form of the condition. OSA occurs when the muscles in your throat collapse, obstructing your airflow and causing you to struggle to breathe.
- Central sleep apnea (CSA): This form occurs because your brain isn’t sending the correct breathing signals to your lungs. Although it’s not as common as OSA, CSA is considered a serious condition because it affects the lower brainstem.
- Complex sleep apnea: This is a combination of OSA and CSA, also known as treatment-emergent central sleep apnea.
Part of the danger of this disorder is that it doesn’t just affect your sleep. When left untreated, it can quickly take a toll on other aspects of your life as well. It’s associated with other serious illnesses, including congestive heart failure, kidney failure, hypothyroid disease, neurological diseases, and even damage to the brainstem.
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
This disorder comes with several distressing symptoms. These may include:
- Snoring, choking, or coughing at night
- Trouble falling asleep or waking up
- Frequent nighttime urination
- Morning dry mouth, sore throat, or headaches
- Daytime exhaustion
- Trouble focusing
Treatments for Sleep Disordered Breathing
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) Therapy
A CPAP machine is the most common method of treatment. This device pushes oxygen into your respiratory system through a hose and mask that goes over your mouth and nose. Your CPAP machine opens your airway and lets you breathe clearly through the night.
Oral Appliance Therapy
A more subtle treatment method, oral appliance therapy uses a mouthguard that we design to keep your airway open. This appliance fits comfortably into your mouth and is a smaller, quieter alternative to CPAP.
Let Us Help You Sleep At Symmetry Dental
Sleep apnea can be a debilitating disorder. With the help of a sleep specialist, Dr. Adatia can create solutions that help you wake up feeling well-rested and ready to take on your day. If you’re ready to find a treatment, schedule a consultation by calling (403) 271-2661 today.