In the United States alone, 22 million people are affected by sleep apnea. If you’re among this number, it can cause chronic snoring issues and you may wake up regularly with dry mouth and throat pain. Shirley H. Bien, DMD, at Greenhills Dental Care works closely with men and women living in Fremont, California, to tackle the symptoms of sleep apnea, prevent its exacerbation, and restore a regular sleep schedule. To learn more about sleep apnea treatment, call the office or schedule an appointment online today.
Sleep Apnea Q & A
What is sleep apnea?
People suffering from sleep apnea are at risk of severe respiratory problems during their sleep. In most cases, sleep apnea causes you to stop breathing for brief intervals during the night. As a result, you might snore or wake up thirsty and with a sore throat.
If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and more.
What are the different kinds of sleep apnea?
There are three main types of sleep apnea:
Obstructive sleep apnea
This is the most common type of sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) occurs when either your throat relaxes so much that it collapses or your tongue blocks your throat’s airway. As a result, you have difficulty breathing throughout the night.
Central sleep apnea
The medulla is the area of your brain that controls your breathing, how you swallow, and your heart rate. Central sleep apnea refers to the malfunctioning of the medulla and causes you to lose control of your breathing, often making you stop breathing altogether for a brief period.
Mixed sleep apnea
As the name suggests, mixed sleep apnea occurs when you suffer from a combination of both obstructive and central sleep apnea.
Dr. Bien and her team have the expertise to identify the kind of sleep apnea you’re suffering from and offer the most appropriate treatment based on your unique situation.
How is sleep apnea treated?
There are multiple treatment options for sleep apnea, though the primary goal regardless of the type of sleep apnea you’re suffering from is to open up your airways and restore your breathing abilities.
Dr. Bien uses the National Sleep Foundation-approved continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device to keep your airways open. During this treatment, you place a mask on your face while you sleep. The device then makes sure your airways are open and allowing for healthy air flow.
In extreme cases, Dr. Bien might recommend surgery, though generally sleep apnea can be regulated either through CPAP therapy or other oral appliances designed to reposition your jaw to keep your throat from collapsing.
Call Greenhills Dental Care or schedule an appointment online today to learn more about your options for treating sleep apnea.