Over 75 million people suffer from sleep disorders and/or snoring. At our Fort Collins sleep disorder treatment centers we help our patients to achieve a better nights sleep. A lack of sleep affects your behavior, energy, and emotions, which will lead to a slow deterioration of your health. 90% of people who snore experience apneic disorders. Here are some of the different custom appliances we provide patients for OSA and snoring.
What can I do about Snoring?
If you feel snoring is a problem, discuss it with your dentist or doctor. You may be a suitable candidate for a custom sleep appliance (oral airway dilator), which is one of the most efficient and effective methods for treating primary snoring.
How does a Sleep Appliance work?
At our Fort Collins sleep disorder treatment center we use a variety of appliances for snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) issues. They are made and fitted by your doctor, and it works by moving your jaw and tongue forward, thereby creating more space for you to properly breathe during the night. This sleep apnea treatment reduces or eliminates snoring and helps open the airway. However, it is important that you are screened for TMJ and arthritic changes.
How does Snoring indicate Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Snoring is often an indicator of something more serious called OSA. Snoring and OSA are similar respiratory sleep disorders.
- Snoring occurs when the air you breathe vibrates the tissues of the airway due to a blocked or narrowed air passage (nose, mouth or throat).
- OSA occurs when your breathing regularly stops or is slowed for 10 seconds or longer due to blocked or narrowed air passage (nose, mouth or throat).
Airway blockage may be caused by excess tissue in the throat or nasal passage, large tonsils, a large tongue and sometimes the structure of the jaw itself.
Why is Obstructive Sleep Apnea a serious problem?
Your body is being robbed of the rest it needs to function during the day when you are constantly awoken throughout the night.
- OSA symptoms include:
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Feeling exhausted after a normal night of sleep
- Symptoms that your bed partner is likely aware of:
- Frequent episodes of obstructed breathing during sleep
- Snoring, gasps, choking or gurgling sound
- Bruxism (tooth grinding)
- Long term symptoms:
- Increased risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease
- Sexual dysfunction
- Compromised immune system
- Learning and memory problems
- Poor mental and emotional health
OSA is classified as mild, moderate, or severe, depending on the number of stops (apnea) or slow breathing (hypopnea) per hour.
Sleep Apnea Treatment Options:
In addition to lifestyle changes such as good sleep hygiene, exercise and weight loss, there are three primary ways for snoring and sleep apnea treatment:
- CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure)
- Oral Appliance Therapy
Oral Appliance Therapy is indicated for:
- Patients with primary snoring or mild OSA who do not respond to behavioral measures such as weight loss or sleep position change.
- Patients with moderate to severe OSA who are intolerant of or refuse treatment with nasal CPAP.
- Oral appliances are also indicated for patients who refuse treatment or are not candidates for tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy, craniofacial operations or tracheotomy.
Advantages of Oral Dental Appliances:
High compliance: 88% of patients feel comfortable enough to use it nightly
High effectiveness: 91% of patients report improvement
High acceptance: 96% of patients report that they will continue to use their specialized appliance.