Have you ever experienced snoring or breathing issues while asleep due to which you experience troubled sleep patterns? In such cases, it is usually the bedmate who notices the change in breathing. This health issue could be caused due to a sleep disorder called sleep apnea. Patients with sleep apnea often experience shortness of breath while sleeping, and are usually woken up traumatized due to the inability to breathe.
What causes sleep apnea?
The muscles of our body relax when we sleep. This is applicable to the tissues of the throat as well, which may relax excessively in some instances. Due to this, the roof of the throat may collapse and block the opening to the airway completely. The patient will be unable to breathe in such cases, due to which they will be suddenly woken up, and often shocked!
What causes snoring issues?
Snoring is caused due to the resonance in the airway while inhaling and exhaling during sleep. When the airway partially closes, the passage for the flow of air reduces significantly. Due to this, the patient tends to snore while asleep subconsciously. It can cause a sore throat, reduced quality of sleep, early morning headaches, bruxism, etc.
What is the solution?
Sleep apnea and snoring are caused due to the blockage of the airway, either partially or entirely. Hence, the solution to this is preventing the tissues from obstructing the airflow through the airway. We recommend using an oral appliance called the Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD) as a treatment for snoring and sleep apnea. The device has to be worn before going to bed. It brings the lower jaw slightly forward to enlarge the airway's opening and keeps the roof of the throat from collapsing.
A more advanced treatment form is the use of a CPAP device. It consists of a pressurized oxygen cylinder that offers a continuous supply of oxygen to the patient while asleep. The patient has to wear a mask connected to the oxygen cylinder over their mouth and nose before going to bed. It maintains a continuous pressure in the airway, thereby keeping it from getting blocked.
To have a consultation with our dentist, Dr. Pyle, please schedule an online appointment or call us at (765) 288-6121, and we will be happy to help.