Does the sound of snoring—yours or somebody else’s—frequently wake you up during the night? That sound may be a wakeup call to a more serious condition known as sleep apnea. A person with sleep apnea experiences stoppages in their breathing numerous times. Each time can last anywhere from a few seconds to a full minute. Most often, sleep apnea is caused by your tongue or throat tissue that relax during sleep and collapse around your airway. Hence, that snoring sound as air vibrates through the narrowed opening. Dr. Dennis C. Ayer treats sleep apnea in Leawood, KS, with a customized sleep appliance that fits comfortably in your mouth to maintain an open airway.
During a sleep apnea episode, the cessation of breathing signals the brain to awaken the body in order to restart breathing. And while most sleep apnea sufferers do not recall being awake during the night, the frequency nevertheless takes a toll on the entire body. A number of serious health conditions have been linked to sleep apnea including high blood pressure, stroke, heart failure, diabetes, depression and headaches.
Moreover, because of the extreme tiredness that many people with sleep apnea face during the day, studies have proven that this condition can be direct cause of automobile accidents. In addition, thousands of hours of work productivity are lost because sufferers are not able to concentrate. Thus, the importance of treating sleep apnea cannot be overstated.
In addition to snoring and daytime exhaustion, sleep apnea is marked by other symptoms, including:
- Gasping for breath during sleep
- Painful morning headaches
- A sore throat or dry mouth upon awakening
- Difficulties concentrating
- Frequent nighttime urination
Treat Sleep Apnea Leawood, KS
At our dental practice in Leawood, KS, Dr. Ayer and his team have helped many patients with sleep apnea and they can help you, too. We can prescribe a custom-designed oral appliance for you to wear at night while you sleep. This appliance is made of smooth plastic and fits comfortably in your mouth. In place, the appliance shifts your lower jaw slightly forward, thereby opening your breathing passage and preventing your tongue and the other soft tissue in your throat from collapsing around your airway. For many patients, an oral appliance proves to be a much more agreeable treatment for sleep apnea than a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine.
In addition to wearing this special oral appliance, patients with sleep apnea should also take to maintain proper weight and lose pounds if necessary; eliminate smoking, alcoholic beverages and sedative, which can all depress breathing; and sleep on your side rather than your back to help keep your airway open.
Call Our Office Today
If your suspect that you or the person sleeping one pillow over may have sleep apnea, then call the dental office of Dr. Dennis Ayer, the dentist Johnson County, KS, turns to for comprehensive dental services. We’re located in Leawood, KS, and new patients are also welcome from the surrounding areas of Shawnee, Merriam, Overland Park, Prairie Village, Olathe, and beyond.