Sleep Apnoea (also spelled apnea) is a potentially dangerous and highly irritating condition that can seriously interrupt your life. The good news is there are effective Sleep Apnoea treatments available from your doctor, and your dentist. What is Obstructive Sleep Apnoea? Obstructive Sleep Apnoea, commonly known as Sleep Apnoea, is a condition in which airways collapse during sleep and breathing is stopped between 10 seconds to 1 minute. This can occur multiple times during the night, thus not allowing for a deep, penetrative sleep to take place. Sufferers of Sleep Apnoea can wake feeling considerably tired due to broken amounts of sleep. Sleep Apnoea can have a significant impact on health and general wellbeing. Sleep Apnoea greatly increases the risk of heart disease and heart attacks. Sleep deprivation due to Sleep Apnoea can raise the chances of injury and motor vehicle accidents. Children’s school performance can also be impacted as a result of Sleep Apnoea. In the past, sleep apnoea treatments have been invasive and cumbersome so were largely ineffective for light sleepers. This has lead to sleep apnoea going untreated in some patients. What are the symptoms of Sleep Apnoea? Symptoms of Sleep Apnoea can include: · Snoring · Periods of gasping, snorting or choking during sleep · Waking with a dry, sore throat · Irritability, anxiety or depression · Poor concentration or memory skills How is Sleep Apnoea diagnosed? If you think you have Sleep Apnoea, the first step is to see your local General Practitioner who may refer you to an ENT Surgeon to rule out any other causes for your symptoms. The second step is to undergo a sleep study where overnight monitoring in consultation with a sleep physician will occur. This will involve investigating and diagnosing the problem based on your sleep patterns. It will also assist in finding the treatment that is best suited to you. Sleep Apnoea treatments from your dentist An Oral Appliance called the Mandibular Advancement Splint (MAS) can be custom fit for people with mild obstructive sleep apnoea. This appliance fits into the mouth similar to a mouth-guard and holds the lower jaw forward which creates extra room for the tongue. This then results in a decrease in snoring. This appliance is best suited to those with no pre-existing dental or jaw problems. These are a revolutionary product for the treatment of sleep apnoea because unlike the older style machines, these fit neatly int he mouth and don’t interfere with natural sleep movement. A tongue-retraining device can also be used to correct Sleep Apnoea. This is a splint that is inserted by your dentist to keep airways open. This device required periodic adjustments over time. Do you...Read More
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