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PRESCOTT SLEEP APNEA

Prescott Dental Arts provides treatments for Sleep Apnea and snoring disorders in Prescott, Arizona

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a sleep-related breathing disorder that prevents regular airflow during sleep. OSA occurs when the tissue in the back of the throat collapses and blocks the airway, prohibiting regular breathing. Commons symptoms of OSA are heavy snoring, intermittent pauses in breathing and daytime sleepiness.

As a result of these breathing disruptions, the blood-oxygen level drops. When it drops to a dangerous threshold, the body wakes up. It happens so quickly that the sleeper seldom notices or remembers. However, waking up hundreds of times during the night seriously disrupts a healthy sleep cycle, which causes the person to feel very tired the next day.

OSA patients suffer from much more than just sleep disruption; they are far more likely to suffer from strokes and heart problems, including heart attacks, congestive heart failure, and hypertension. They also have a higher incidence of work and driving-related accidents.

How common is sleep apnea? Very common. In fact, more than 18 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea.

How do you know if you have OSA?

OSA is most common in obese, middle-aged men. OSA risk increases with weight gain because excess fat in the back of the throat can narrow the airway. Women and men with OSA often have neck sizes of more than 16 or 17 inches, respectively. However, OSA can affect anyone.

Do you ever wake from sleep choking or gasping for breath? Has your spouse noticed that you snore loudly or stop breathing during the night? Do you feel excessively tired during the day? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you might have OSA.

A physician needs to diagnose OSA. Diagnosis is based on the results of an overnight sleep study, called a Polysomnogram (PSG). This test will chart brain waves, heart beat and breathing during sleep. It also records arm and leg movements.

The specialist will consider your symptoms. Ask someone who has seen you sleep if you snore loudly, stop breathing, or gasp for breath during the night. The specialist will also want to know if your symptoms began after gaining weight or stopping exercising.

Treatment Options

Behavior therapies such as losing weight, avoiding alcohol and tobacco smoke, and sleeping on your side can decrease the severity of sleep apnea.

Medical and dental treatments include oral appliance therapy (OAT), Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), and upper-airway surgery.

Oral Appliance Therapy

Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT) is a popular and non-invasive solution to OSA. Oral appliances are worn in the mouth to treat Sleep Apnea & Snoring problems in Prescott AZ. These devices are similar to orthodontic retainers or sports mouth guards. They maintain an opened, unobstructed airway. There are many different FDA-approved oral appliances available.

OAT involves the selection, design, fitting and follow-up care of a custom-made oral appliance for sleep apnea treatment. Dentists trained in dental sleep medicine are familiar with the various designs of appliances. They can determine which one best suits your specific needs.

Your dentist will work with your physician and sleep specialist as part of a medical team. Initiation of oral appliance therapy can take several weeks to several months to complete. Your Prescott dentist will continue to monitor your treatment and evaluate the response of your teeth and jaws.

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)

CPAP uses pressurized air generated from a bedside machine. The air moves through a tube, connected to a mask that covers your nose, mouth, or nose and mouth. The force of the pressurized air keeps the airway open. CPAP opens the airway like air into a balloon; when air is blown into the balloon, it expands. Frankly, many people do not like the CPAP approach because of the general inconvenience of wearing a mask while sleeping.

Surgical Procedures

Dentists who are oral and maxillofacial surgeons may employ a variety of methods to evaluate, diagnose and treat upper-airway obstruction. They may use minimally invasive procedures or more complex surgery, including jaw advancement. It may be necessary to remove tonsils and adenoids (especially in children), the uvula, or parts of the soft palate and throat.

For our friends in Prescott, AZ, your best solution for Sleep Apnea and Snoring disorders is Prescott Dental Arts. Please contact our office to schedule a friendly and gentle consultation.

Call us at (928) 445-8980

Prescott Dental Arts
1787 Willow Creek Rd.
Prescott, AZ 86301

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