Causes and treatment for obstructive sleep apnea in Pembroke Pines, FL
Dr. Milton Ruiz of Pines Dental in Pembroke Pines, FL knows that most people don’t think of the dentist when they can’t sleep. However, adults with obstructive sleep apnea can find effective treatment from the same team that keeps their mouth happy and healthy.
About sleep apnea
Most adults are only concerned about snoring when it’s coming from their partner and waking them up at night. However, common and loud snoring could be an indication of sleep apnea, a medical condition in which a person stops breathing for 10 to 20 seconds many times a night. During a sleep apnea episode, the individual often jolts out of sleep, even subconsciously, in order to begin breathing again. The consequences of sleep deprivation can cause overwhelming fatigue, poor concentration, irritability, and headaches. Over time the lack of sleep can also lead to health issues such as high blood pressure, increased weight, heart conditions, and diabetes.
Causes of sleep apnea
The most common type of sleep apnea is known as obstructive sleep apnea and happens when the airway becomes blocked by other tissue in the mouth. While it is not known exactly what causes sleep apnea, there are several risk factors that have been linked to sleep apnea, including being overweight, smoking, age 66 or older, male, and being related to someone with the condition. In some cases, the sleep apnea episodes are related to allergies or viruses that cause congestion in the nasal cavity or enlarged tonsils and adenoids.
Treatment for sleep apnea
For patients who do have sleep apnea, it’s comforting to know that there is treatment. In some cases, the physician will recommend lifestyle changes such as exercise, smoking cessation, avoiding alcohol or pills that put individuals into a heavy sleep, and avoiding caffeine or large meals right before bed. Additionally, they may provide the patient with tips such as sleeping on your side, propping up the head, or using nasal strips to open up the airways.
If these changes don’t work, patients are encouraged to reach out to their dentist. Dr. Ruiz has been helping his patients find relief from sleep apnea and achieve a restful night’s sleep for many years using oral appliance therapy. Much like a sports mouth guard the oral appliance is worn while sleeping and prevents the tongue and tissue in the mouth from blocking the airway.
For more information about sleep apnea and possible treatments, call 316-768-4050 today.
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