Sleep apnea is a condition that is most commonly recognized by impressively disruptive snoring. Unfortunately, for millions of patients, the condition can be much more than just a social disturbance. The snoring that is caused by the vibration of the soft tissues in the throat can be a sign of a serious medical condition in which a person may repeatedly stop breathing during sleep. It is important to note that snoring alone does not always indicate a sleep apnea problem, and sleep apnea can sometimes occur even when snoring is not a symptom.
An interruption in breathing that occurs as the result of the airway being obstructed (blocked) by excessive soft tissues in the throat, a narrow airway, or obesity is known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). To prevent the health complications that are associated with this condition, your Walnut Creek, CA dentist may recommend a small oral appliance that can help to maintain an open airway while you are asleep.
The signs of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) will vary greatly between patients. Those signs may include:
- Waking up feeling fatigued or tired
- Inability to concentrate during the day
- Irritability, depression, aggression
- Sleepiness during the day
- Choking or gasping while sleeping
The risks of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) can compromise your health and threaten your safety as well as the safety of those around you:
- High blood pressure
- Heart failure
- Increased risk for accidents while driving or operating machinery
A sleep disorder such as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) can be treated with a simple, custom-fitted mouth piece that helps to properly position your jaw in order to maintain an open airway. Your Walnut Creek CA dentist can design an appliance that fits comfortably and functions at a high level night after night.
To find out if a sleep apnea oral appliance is right for you, we invite you to contact our office today for more information.