Spring area dentist describes the causes of sleep apnea
One of the most common types of sleep apnea is obstructive sleep apnea. Dr. Dernick of the Spring area is a dentist who can help patients with this condition.
Many patients ask their physician about the causes of sleep apnea. When obstructive sleep apnea occurs, it is due to a blockage in the airway. This may be caused by a misaligned jaw, the tongue falling back into the throat, or from large deposits of fat on the neck that obstruct the throat while lying on the back. This condition is diagnosed by a physician with the help of a sleep study. The sleep study is done to monitor the sleep activity of patients to determine the cause of their concerns.
Once a physician has provided the proper diagnosis, patients can then determine the best way to address the problem. In many instances, physicians suggest the use of a CPAP machine. Also known as continuous positive airway pressure, this device is worn at night and it keeps air flowing. This maintains the airway for a good night’s sleep to allow patients to feel well rested and stop the cycle that sleep apnea causes.
However, many patients are unaware that their dentist may also be able to address their obstructive sleep apnea with an alternative solution called oral appliance therapy. Oral appliances can be worn at night to help position the jaw and hold the tongue in place. This also allows air to pass freely through the airway to keep it open and improve sleep and overall quality of life. Compliance is often improved with oral appliances, as patients find them more comfortable and easier to use.
If you are interested in learning more about how your dentist can assist with obstructive sleep apnea, call Dr. Robert G. Dernick, DDS to learn about oral appliance therapy. Our team works closely with your physician to ensure we are collaborating on ways to assist you in achieving great overall health and address the problems caused by the condition. Patients in and around the Spring area are encouraged to visit our practice in The Woodlands for a complete consultation and examination to determine if oral appliance therapy is appropriate for treating your obstructive sleep apnea.
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