Sleep apnea occurs when your mouth and pharynx muscles become relaxed while sleeping. When these muscles become too relaxed, the tongue begins to prevent the necessary amount of air from reaching your lungs. If you are suffering from sleep apnea you will wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air.
The conscientious team at Cherrydale Family Dental are very thoughtful and have created a true family orientated environment working with every member of the family, from infant to teenager to mom and dad to grandparents. Patience is a virtue exercised with all ages. Everyone on our staff believes this. We are patient when diagnosing sleep apnea. Correcting this common alignment can be a game changer. If you have any questions about evaluating whether you might have sleep apnea, simply call Cherrydale Family Dental at 703-243-8288. You can find us at 4399 Old Dominion Drive, Arlington, VA, 22312.
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The Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
The inability to maintain consistent breathing while sleeping is usually caused by obstructive sleep apnea. This type of apnea is the result of your airway located in the back of your throat becoming blocked. As a result of this blockage, you may develop extremely loud snoring, shortness of breath, or have chronic feelings of lethargy or restlessness, because you are not able to relax and sleep as deeply as your body needs to.
A recent study reported that one out of three chronic, severe snorers were found to have had a harmful degree of sleep apnea. During the night they will often experience sleep apnea that may last as long as 40 seconds. This then causes your brain to wake you up just long enough such that you will move and resume your breathing. Most likely you do not even know that you have this condition until you are observed by a sleeping partner. Many sleep apnea sufferers are unaware of their condition and have just learned to live a life of constant fatigue.
The signs and symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea include:
- Loud snoring
- Abrupt awakenings accompanied by gasping or choking
- Observed episodes of stopped breathing during sleep
- Nighttime sweating
- Morning headache
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Difficulty concentrating during the day
- High blood pressure
The Dangers Associated with Sleep Apnea
Many people assume sleep apnea is just an annoyance that has no real health consequences, but this could not be further from the truth. Untreated sleep apnea can increase the risk for many serious health issues, including:
- Chronic Headaches
- High Blood Pressure
- Memory Loss
- Diminished Sex Drive
- Heart Disease
Given the severity of some of these issues and their impact on your quality of life, it is important that you do not ignore issues related to sleep apnea and schedule an appointment today with Cherrydale Family Dental to discuss your possible treatment options.
How Does an Oral Appliance Work?
Oral appliance therapy is a treatment from Cherrydale Family Dental for the treatment of sleep related breathing disorders, snoring, and sleep apnea. It is an adjustable appliance you wear in your mouth while sleeping. The custom-made oral appliance keeps your lower jaw in a forward position. When used correctly, any mild sleep apnea can be easily minimized and even eliminated.
The way an oral appliance for sleep apnea works is quite simple. The appliance is placed in the mouth and makes the jawbone sit a little further forward than usual. This will stabilize your tongue and lower jaw, repositioning them, resulting in the necessary room for air to enter and allowing normal breathing.
With successful oral appliance therapy, you can begin to live your life again free from ant sleep apnea symptoms. Your quality of life can be dramatically improved when you get a good night’s sleep. You will have more energy and your mind will feel sharper. Your partner will appreciate the improvement as well.
The Advantages of an Oral Appliance
There are a variety of benefits in wearing a dental appliance for sleep apnea, which include the fact that they are:
- Quiet, unlike a CPAP machine
- Comfortable, no face mask to wear
- Easy to wear
- Portable, can go with you anywhere
- Easy to care for with daily proper cleaning
You may want to evaluate an oral appliance with Cherrydale Family Dental as an alternative to the popular continuous positive airway (CPAP) pressure therapy.
The Cost of Treating Sleep Apnea
The final cost of treating sleep apnea will be determined by a variety of factors, such as the severity of your case and what type of dental plan you are currently enrolled in.
Contact your dental insurance company before your appointment to understand your coverage options. Make sure to bring this information to your consultation to review with us prior to determining a treatment plan. We also offer Care Credit, so talking with our financial coordinator to assess your options is another helpful step to quality of life within your financial means.
Quality Dental Care for ALL Family Members
At Cherrydale Family Dental, 4399 Old Dominion Dr., Arlington, VA, we work hard to nurture trusting and long-lasting relationships with patients of all ages. We see patients with all types of oral issues because we understand how unique each of us are. We embrace everyone and welcome all to our family. We want to contribute to helping you maintain good oral health habits and practices. We always look forward to seeing you and discussing what might best for you and your smile. Please contact us at 703-243-8288 to discuss the benefits of sleep apnea therapy and how it can contribute your quality of life.
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