Effective sleep apnea treatment from your dentist in Pembroke Pines, FL
Snoring is a common problem among adults and children. It can also be a warning sign of a serious health issue called sleep apnea. Help is closer to Hollywood, Miramar, and Cooper City than you might think. At Pines Dental Associates in Pembroke Pines, FL, Dr. Milton Ruiz helps patients (and their bed mates) get the restful sleep they need for improved overall health.
Why you should be concerned about sleep apnea
It is easy to joke about the minor annoyance of occasional snoring. Loud, persistent snoring, however, is no laughing matter. It can indicate that apneic episodes are taking place.
- As you begin to fall asleep, soft structures at the back of the throat relax. They obstruct the path air takes from the nose and mouth into the lungs.
- As the airway narrows, you snore noisily.
- Breathing becomes shallow and may stop for a few seconds up to several minutes.
- The blood oxygen level plummets.
- Sensing danger, the brain triggers a jolt of adrenalin.
- You jerk or snort into wakefulness.
- You may reposition, then the cycle repeats – potentially dozens of time each hour – keeping you from reaching deep levels of sleep where vital cellular regeneration takes place.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is linked to grave health hazards including high blood pressure, increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke, diabetes, obesity, and depression.
Discreet CPAP alternative for sleep apnea sufferers in Pembroke Pines, FL
In the past, CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) was the go-to therapy for OSA. While CPAP is effective when used conscientiously, many people have problems falling asleep while wearing a mask attached to a bedside compressor.
Once the existence and severity of OSA have been determined through a physician’s sleep study, Dr. Ruiz suggests oral appliance therapy. A mandibular splint is a custom-fitted medical device worn over teeth. Just slip the mouthguard into place at bedtime. It holds the mouth slightly open, with the jaw just a bit forward and the tongue depressed, keeping the airway clear. The appliance is discreet, portable, and easy to keep clean. It works well for mild to moderate OSA cases. Oral appliance therapy can also improve the effectiveness of CPAP for severe apneics.
You deserve the health benefits of deep sleep. Call Dr. Ruiz at Pines Dental Associates in Pembroke Pines, FL – (954) 715-4660 to schedule a sleep apnea consultation.
Sleep apnea happens when your airway gets obstructed during sleep. Sometimes it may occur due to the tongue and throat muscles relaxing and blocking the windpipe. Anomalies in the oral structure, like a large tongue or tonsils, and obesity can increase your risk for sleep apnea.
Snoring is one of the main symptoms, although not all snorers have this condition. Brief periodic interruptions to breathing are another symptom. Since they suffer from disrupted sleep, patients often have morning headaches and excessive sleepiness during the daytime.
Decreased sleep quality can cause problems like memory and concentration issues, mood disturbances, and a higher risk of driving accidents. Sleep apnea is also believed to lead to high blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, diabetes, and an increased risk of heart attacks and stroke.
A sleep study known as a polysomnogram is the best method of diagnosis where you are monitored as you sleep. The study involves connecting you to various equipment that will monitor your brain activity, blood oxygen levels, breathing pattern, and heart rate as you sleep. The results will help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis.
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) is the most common treatment, delivered through a mask attached to a small machine. The pressure keeps the airway open and prevents breathing interruptions during sleep. Although effective, most don’t like this method as it is uncomfortable and inconvenient. Oral appliances and surgery are other options.
Dr. Milton Ruiz believes everyone should be able to attain excellent oral health, and his mission is to provide the highest quality care at the most affordable cost to all his patients. Dr. Ruiz is a general dentist with over 25 years of expertise who graduated from Tufts Dental School in Boston.
Dr. Ruiz has completed over 500 hours of continuing education in his decades of practice to keep current on new technology and improvements in dentistry. He is skilled in all aspects of dentistry, including cosmetic dentistry, root canal therapy, sleep apnea therapy, orthodontics, Invisalign certification, Oral Conscious Sedation, and restorative dentistry. You can rely on him to make your dental visit as comfortable as possible.