What Are the Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects the breathing of an individual, causing it to stop and start repeatedly during sleep. In breathing the involuntary pause might be as a result of a blocked airway or a signal that there might be a problem in the brain.
If the sleep apnea is left untreated it can lead to health complications like depression and heart disease. Different causes of sleep apnea require different treatment methods.
Types of Sleep Apnea
- Central sleep apnea where the brain fails to send signals properly to the muscles in control of your breathing.
- Obstructive sleep apnea which is caused by the relaxation of the throat muscles.
- Complex sleep apnea syndrome where the victim suffers from both central and obstructive sleep apneas.
Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Someone else might notice that when you are a sleep you stop breathing then you grunt or gasp suddenly and you go back to sleep afterwards. The symptoms and signs of central and obstructive sleep apnea overlap sometimes and this makes it difficult to differentiate the two. They have common symptoms and signs which include:
- Loud snoring
- Restless sleep
- Difficulty concentrating
- Waking up to urinate several times at night
- Waking up with a sore throat or dry mouth
- Morning headache
- Erectile dysfunction and decreased libido
This condition is common with people who have a large neck circumference.
Sleep Apnea Treatment Options
1. Continuous positive airway pressure therapy
This is the first treatment option offered. It gently provides a stream of positive air pressure constantly through a mask it helps to keep the airway open. While helpful, this therapy may be unsuitable for some patients if they develop issues while under it.
However, some measures might be taken to ensure the equipment is more comfortable. You can make adjustments to the settings and the mask. To help relieve nasal symptoms you can add moisture to the flowing air in the mask.
This treatment reduces the snoring and betters your sleep.
It reduces or eliminates an extra tissue in the throat that usually collapse and block the airway during sleep. Some surgeries are minimally invasive while others are complex. The surgery might be done in one of the areas below:
- Uvula and the soft palate
- Adenoids and tonsils
- Lower and upper jaw
Some questions might be asked by the patient such as the surgeries success rate. It’s important to ensure you discuss the aspects of the procedure fully with your doctor so that your mind is put at ease.
3. Wearing a dental or oral appliance
The appliance prevents the collapsing of the airway by getting hold of the tongue in place or by sliding your jaw forward. It helps the patient to breathe when sleeping. Like a mouth guard the appliance is worn in the mouth to help with the sleep apnea.
Oral appliance is a non-invasive and effective treatment. Many people like this appliance because it is portable, comfortable, easy to put on, convenient for travel, quiet and easy to care for.
4. Positional therapy
It is a strategy involving behavior that treats positional sleep apnea. Some of the patients sleep apnea is present only when they are in a supine position. A supine position is achieved when you sleep on your back.
This therapy requires you to wear a device on your back or waist. It ensures you sleep in the side position.
5. Making a change to your everyday habits
Some lifestyle changes can actually help reduce the snoring and improve the sleep apnea symptoms. Behavioral changes like quitting smoking or not taking alcohol can alleviate the symptoms. When you drink alcohol the throat muscles relax and this can cause the snoring or collapsing of your airway.
Franklin Dental Care is a dentistry located in Oakland, CA. We offer services such as invisalign installment, dental exams and cleanings among other services. In Oakland, CA our dentistry has high-quality dentists dedicated to providing the patients with best care possible.
We make sure that you are comfortable and at ease during your visit in our office. Our team is well trained and equipped to fulfill all your needs. Set an appointment with us and we will be more than happy to attend to you.