3 Steps to Treat
1. Schedule a Consultation
- Dr. Webber will talk to you. If necessary, he can help you get a sleep test.
2. Get Fitted with an Oral Appliance
- This CPAP alternative is effective in part because it is custom-fit to your anatomy.
3. Enjoy Restful Sleep
- Learn what it’s like to sleep all night and wake up rested. You’ll quickly see improvement.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition in which your breathing stops during sleep. This causes an oxygen shortage that forces your brain to wake slightly to resume breathing. It also triggers many effects of suffocation, such as an increased heart rate and pressure as your body struggles to distribute oxygen to the body. You also experience adrenaline surges, which makes it hard for you to get the restorative rest you need.
There are two types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and central sleep apnea (CSA). In OSA, your airway collapses, cutting off your air supply. In CSA, your brain stops sending out the signals that tell your body to breathe. Obstructive sleep apnea is more common. About 98% of people with sleep apnea have OSA, although many people have both types.
How Do You Identify Sleep Apnea?
One of the things that’s dangerous about sleep apnea is that most people with the condition don’t know they have it. After all, it happens during sleep, so you don’t know when it’s happening.
However, you can watch for these signs and symptoms:
- Loud snoring
- Waking frequently at night
- Nighttime urination
- Morning headaches
- Waking unrested
- Daytime sleepiness
- High blood pressure
- Low energy
- Memory problems
- Weight gain or difficulty losing weight
- Irritability or mood swings
If you notice multiple items from the above list, it’s time to talk to a dentist about sleep apnea. Don’t be surprised if your doctor doesn’t know a lot about sleep apnea. You might need to talk to a sleep doctor or sleep dentist like Dr. Webber in Torrance, CA.
The only way to really diagnose sleep apnea is with a sleep test. Most people can do a sleep test at home: there’s no need to go to a sleep lab.
Sleep Apnea Is Dangerous
We mentioned above that sleep apnea is potentially deadly. In fact, people with sleep apnea may be up to six times more likely to die in the near future. That’s because sleep apnea contributes to many serious health conditions, including:
- High blood pressure
- Heart arrhythmias
- Kidney failure
- Heart failure
In addition, people with sleep apnea are at a higher risk of being involved in dangerous or deadly accidents at work or while driving.
If you suspect sleep apnea in your or a loved one, getting treatment could be a matter of life or death.
Once diagnosed, sleep apnea is treatable. Most doctors prescribe a treatment called CPAP, short for continuous positive airway pressure. CPAP keeps your airway open by forcing air down your throat through your mouth, nose, or both.
Properly used, CPAP is nearly 100% effective, and can treat both OSA and CSA. However, many people find CPAP difficult to use and uncomfortable, so only about half of the people use their CPAP according to their prescription. The others essentially have deadly untreated sleep apnea and need a different approach.
For people who don’t like or can’t use CPAP, oral appliance therapy is an effective, comfortable, and convenient alternative. Custom-fitted oral appliances can be as effective as CPAP in treating obstructive sleep apnea.
Are You Looking for Sleep Apnea Help in Torrance?
Do you suspect you might have sleep apnea but aren’t making headway with your doctor? Or have you been prescribed CPAP and want a more comfortable alternative? Let sleep dentist Dr. Webber help. Please call (310) 534-3477 today for an appointment at Simply Smiles in Torrance, CA.