Sleep Apnea Treatment in Melville, NY
Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder involving repeated breathing interruptions that may occur several times each night due to abnormalities in the air passageways or brain malfunctions. This condition affects about 18 million people of all ages in the US, with a risk of serious complications. Sleep apnea occurs when the upper airway and airflow are blocked, causing the oxygen levels to drop in both the brain and the blood, which leads to shallow breathing or breathing pauses during sleep.
Fortunately, most cases of sleep apnea can be effectively diagnosed and treated. Call us today at 631-423-6767 and schedule a consultation with Dr. Dean Glasser or Dr. Renee Glaser about your concerns and questions regarding sleep apnea treatment in Melville, NY!
Types of Sleep Apnea
There are two main types of sleep apnea: obstructive and central.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is more common and involves a blocked or collapsed airway during sleep that may result in breathing abnormalities.
Central sleep apnea (CSA) is less common and involves a malfunction in which the brain doesn’t send the proper signals to control breathing during sleep.
Patients who are overweight, have high blood pressure, are older, smoke, or have a family history of sleep apnea may have an increased risk of developing OSA, while those with heart disease or a stroke are at an increased risk for developing CSA.
Common Signs of Sleep Apnea
Many patients with sleep apnea may not be aware that they have this condition, as many patients do not usually recall any issues once they wake up. However, patients and those close to them should be aware of the signs, which include:
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat
- Morning headaches
- Waking up to shortness of breath
A sleep study is another effective way for doctors to discover if you demonstrate interrupted breathing during sleep. If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, stroke, memory problems, weight gain, impotency, headaches, and daytime fatigue leading to job impairment and motor vehicle crashes.
Treatment of Sleep Apnea
There are many different treatment options available for sleep apnea, depending on each patient's individual case. Many patients can experience significant results from continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines, adjustable airway pressure devices, or oral appliances, all used while sleeping. While treatment often begins with conservative techniques, some patients may require surgery later on.
Through a consultation with Dr. Renee Glasser or Dr. Dean Glasser, we will be able to determine which appliance is best for you based on a thorough evaluation of your individual condition. Patients can take certain steps to treat symptoms of sleep apnea on their own, including losing excess weight, sleeping on their side, and using a saline nasal spray to keep their nasal passages open at night.
Snoring and OSA Treatment in Melville, NY
At one time or another, we have heard someone snoring to varying degrees. We may even joke about it. However, the fact of the matter is OSA is not a joke; it is a serious sign of what we will call respiratory deficiency and can lead to other medical conditions.
OSA, for the purpose of this discussion, is a sleep disorder where a person has no choice but to attempt to breathe through a narrow airway. When we lie down to sleep, muscles that keep the airway open relax and allow the lower jaw and tongue to slide back, thereby obstructing the airway. Imagine you are able to breathe through a large garden hose with good airflow. Now let’s switch the garden hose to something narrower, like a straw. The volume of air is greatly reduced, and it would clearly be a struggle. That is what sleep apnea is. It’s our attempt to breathe through a narrow opening as we sleep. In severe cases, the obstruction is so great the air can be completely blocked, almost suffocating the patient. Without enough oxygen, the brain forces us to wake up and restart the breathing process. It is not uncommon for patients with OSA to wake up as much as 75 times per hour.
Common Signs of OSA
People who suffer from OSA often complain of always feeling tired and not sleeping well. This poor quality of sleep and the patient’s struggle to breathe causes other manifestations, such as:
- High Blood Pressure
- Increased risk of stroke
- Increased risk of heart attack
- Sudden death
- Exhaustion and low energy levels
- Dental manifestations can damage your teeth from grinding
- Temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ)
How is OSA Diagnosed?
Oftentimes, people with OSA are unaware, and their partner is the one to inform them they are snoring. Many patients are often in denial and will seek out high blood pressure medication, sleeping pills, and other medications to treat the symptoms. However, it may surprise you to learn that scheduling a sleep study with your doctor or dentist is just as easy. A sleep study is an overnight affair where you will be monitored over the course of the night. Once diagnosed, treatment options will be recommended.
Another alternative way to measure airway space is with a dental cone beam scan, also known as a CBCT. The modification and software of the CBCT allow for precise measurements, evaluation, and airway analysis.
OSA Treatment Options
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends oral appliances as the first line of treatment for mild to moderate OSA with a 95 percent success rate. The second option is a CPAP machine which fits over the face allowing for a constant flow of air into the lungs. However, it is important to be aware that the mask line can be contaminated, and it is important to keep it clean and sterile at all times. With proper maintenance, this can be avoided and can provide profound results with patient compliance.
Dental appliance therapy provides faster, easier, and more consistent patient compliance. Although the CPAP also has its place in OSA treatment and is an excellent treatment option, it still has some advances to be made.
Schedule a Sleep Apnea Consult in Melville, NY!
Drs. Dean Glasser and Renee Glasser can provide you with a sleep apnea consult in Melville, NY and can provide the latest treatment options to give you back your peaceful night’s rest. Call Impact and General Dentistry of Long Island today at 631-423-6767 to book a one-on-one appointment with Drs. Glasser at our Melville office. Or you can also send us an email contact form by visiting our contact page. We look forward to serving you!
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For more infomation click here to read our recent blog: "SNORE NO MORE: 3 SURGERIES FOR SLEEP APNEA"