Sleep Apnea

added on: April 14, 2011

Sleep Apnea is a potentially life-threatening condition that causes you to literally STOP BREATHING in your sleep. This can happen at least several times a night.  Excess weight, natural aging, menopause, lifestyle, health history and genetics can put you at a greater risk for this condition.

When you fall asleep, your muscles relax and your lower jaw may drop back. When this happens the soft tissues in your throat and mouth can relax so much that it blocks your airway. Since you can’t breath, your brain starts losing oxygen and releases stress hormones that can be very harmful to your health over time.

These episodes can last 10 to 20 seconds each and occur hundreds of times  throughout the night, every night. Sometimes you may not even be aware of what is happening since you are partially asleep you just wake up feeling exhausted.

Chronic sleep deprivation results in slow reflexes, poor concentration and an increased risk of you falling asleep at the wheel.

There are appliances that can be used to treat sleep apnea. They resemble a mouth guard or precision orthodontic retainer. These dental appliances are custom molded to fit your mouth comfortably. These appliances simply hold your tongue and jaw comfortably in the correct position as you sleep to make sure your airway stays clear. With uninterrupted sleep you will wake up refreshed and stay alert all day.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.