Sleep Apnea in Blackfalds and Rimbey
Sleep apnea is a common problem among adults over 40 years old, especially those who are overweight. Most people realize they have sleep apnea when a partner complains of snoring. Snoring is an annoying symptom of sleep apnea, but the sleep disorder has more serious side effects. If untreated, sleep apnea can lead to serious health concerns.
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Snoring is a sign that your airway is partially blocked when you sleep. The sound is created by air being pulled through the obstructed airway past loose tissue in the back of the throat. At times the airway can become completely obstructed and the snoring stops. During the silence you are not taking in any air, and this can be dangerous.
Many people are not aware they have sleep apnea because they do not hear themselves snore at night. Although sleep apnea disturbs your sleep, you may not remember waking up several times during the night. The nighttime symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Loud snoring
- Frequent bathroom trips
- Suddenly gasping for breath
- Restless sleep
- Short periods of not breathing
There are also symptoms of sleep apnea that occur during the day. Experiencing any of these symptoms could alert you to the fact that you are suffering from sleep apnea, even if you are not aware that you experience any of the nighttime symptoms. Daytime symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- Unexplained fatigue
- Depression or irritability
- Daytime drowsiness
- Morning headaches
- Inability to focus
Some of the symptoms of sleep apnea seem more annoying than dangerous, but the sleep disorder has more serious long-term health risks. People who suffer from sleep apnea are three times more likely to suffer a stroke. If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to:
- Irregular heartbeat
- Type II diabetes
- High Blood Pressure
- Automobile accidents
- Work-related injuries
Check with your dentist to learn about possible treatments for sleep apnea.
Sleep Apnea Appliances in Blackfalds
Obstructive sleep apnea can often be corrected by holding the airway open while you sleep. The relaxed muscles in your mouth and face when you sleep allow your jaw to slide back toward your throat, bringing your tongue and any other loose tissue with it. Your airway is diminished by this movement until there is no space for air to flow.
A mandibular advancement device (MAD) holds your jaw forward in its natural position while you sleep so that it cannot collapse into your airway. The device is anchored by your teeth and uses them for leverage to hold your jaw in place. With your jaw held forward, your tongue naturally stays forward and is unable to sag into the back of your throat.
A custom fit MAD is made of soft plastic, similar to a mouth guard, and fits on your teeth. The top and bottom of the MAD are attached at a natural angle so your upper and lower jaws remain in alignment. The device fits comfortably on your teeth. It does not cause any movement in your teeth or irritate your gums.
You only need to wear a MAD at night. During the day is can be removed and soaked in hot water to remove bacteria. A MAD can also be cleaned with toothpaste and a tooth brush like dentures or a removable partial. With the regular cleaning and care, a MAD can last for several years.
Snoring Correction in Blackfalds and Rimbey
Snoring correction is about more than just sound. The sound of your snoring may be keeping your family up at night, but it is having an even more serious effect on your health. To learn more about a custom fit mandibular advancement device and how it might solve your sleep apnea problem, contact Alpen Dental for a consultation today. You can also call us at 403-885-8422 in Blackfalds or 403-843-2173 in Rimbey!