Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can cause a person to stop breathing repeatedly during sleep.
One of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea is snoring, especially loud snoring. Patients suffering from sleep apnea often awaken feeling tired and groggy- as if they didn’t get enough sleep. Sleep apnea can not only interfere with one’s ability to get a good night’s rest, but it can also lead to more serious health problems, such as high blood pressure, stroke and type 2 diabetes.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common type and is more prevalent among patients who may be overweight or who consume alcohol or tobacco. Some patients find relief from snoring with moderate lifestyle changes that reduce the affects of these common factors. But for many others, professional help is needed to stop the snoring and effectively reduce the health risks associated with snoring and OSA.
Dr. Scott Finlay and his associate, Dr. Chris Anderson, offer oral appliance therapy for patients with OSA. Oral appliance therapy, a conservative approach to treating OSA, involves the use of a custom fit mouth guard that is designed to stabilize the jaw, tongue and other soft tissues in the mouth to prevent snoring and allow for uninterrupted breathing. Oral appliance therapy will help patients get a more restful night’s sleep and reduce the risks associated with sleep apnea. Many patients are successfully treated with this type of therapy, avoiding the need for the use of a machine to stop snoring.
Snoring is not only a health hazard in many cases, but it can also interrupt the sleep of other loved ones! Many people don’t realize they are snoring until they are told by someone whose sleep has been habitually interrupted.
If you notice that you awaken feeling tired, even after “sleeping” for 7 or more hours, you may be suffering from a form of sleep apnea. It is important to discuss your symptoms with Dr. Finlay or Dr. Anderson to see if oral appliance therapy is recommended.