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Do you go through each day feeling groggy even when you make sure you get a good night’s sleep? You’re not alone; millions of Americans have undiagnosed obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
You believe you’re getting eight hour’s sleep with OSA, but your sleep is repeatedly being interrupted. If you are not getting restful sleep and people have complained you snore loudly, you may have OSA. Call our office and request an appointment to discover how oral appliance therapy can help you stop snoring and improve your sleep quality.
What Is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
It is the most common form of the sleep disorder. Your normal breathing pauses up to hundreds of times a night for 30 seconds or more. With OSA, your throat muscles relax and the soft palate blocks your airway. Your body senses you are lacking oxygen and you wake temporarily to gasp for air and the muscles flex again. You may not remember waking up because it is only for a second or two. However, your body never gets the deep sleep you need to make you feel refreshed in the morning.
Left untreated, OSA can have serious health consequences such as heart failure, high blood pressure, diabetes, and stroke because of the strain OSA puts on your heart. Additionally, OSA causes oxygen deprivation which can make COPD or asthma worse.
Are There Sleep Apnea Symptoms I Should Watch For?
These symptoms can interfere with the quality of your life:
- Making gasping or choking noises during the night
- Loud snoring
- Trouble concentrating
- Headaches in the morning
- A tendency to fall asleep during the day, sometimes involuntarily
What Causes OSA?
Factors which contribute to OSA include:
- Being overweight
- Having a large neck size
- Being male (Males have twice the rate of OSA as women)
- Using alcohol or sedatives before going to sleep
- Smoking, as it irritates the airway and makes it swell
- While being overweight or obese is one of the top sleep apnea causes, not everyone who has OSA is overweight. Thin people also can have sleep apnea.
What’s a Dentist’s Role in Treating OSA?
Dentists can help identify patients who may have OSA and who are good candidates for oral appliance therapy. They also suggest patients who have mild OSA make certain lifestyle changes, including losing weight, avoiding sleeping on their back, and quitting smoking. If you have sleep apnea in Toms River, please call our office to make an appointment with our dentist.
What Is an Oral Appliance for Sleep Apnea?
A sleep apnea mouth guard, which you’ll wear while sleeping, gently moves your lower jaw and tongue slightly forward to keep your airway open. Your dentist will have your oral appliance fabricated from a mold so it fits over your top and bottom teeth. It’s hinged to make it easy for you to talk or get a drink of water. Since the oral appliance fits over your teeth, you cannot get an oral appliance if you wear full removable dentures. If you would like to see if oral appliance therapy is right for you, please call our office and request an appointment.
How Much Does a Sleep Apnea Mouthpiece Usually Cost?
Your cost would depend on the oral appliance your dentist feels is right for you since there are different brands. Health insurance coverage for oral appliance therapy will also affect your total cost. If you call our office for an appointment, your dentist can go over your estimated cost with you after assessing your needs.
What Benefits Does Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT) Have?
An oral appliance for sleep apnea in Toms River is a non-invasive treatment which can keep your airway open so you don’t stop breathing while sleeping. Patients tend to be more willing to wear their oral appliance each night than those who use a CPAP machine. CPAP machines are highly effective, but some patients dislike wearing a mask. An oral appliance is also ideal for frequent travelers as it’s portable and there’s no need to worry about having an electrical outlet close to the bed. Call our office today and request a consultation. Our dentist will see if a trouble-free oral appliance is right for you.
Will My Medical Insurance Cover Sleep Apnea in Toms River Treatment?
Most health insurance providers cover OAT, although some only offer partial coverage. Contact your provider or plan administrator for more information.