Sleep apnoea is a very common sleep disorder. Sleep apnoea can affect you by blocking your airflow as in obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). If you stop breathing entirely this form of sleep apnoea is called central sleep apnoea or CSA and is a dysfunction of your nervous system that regulates breathing. If you experience a mixture of both, you have a form of sleep apnoea called mixed sleep apnoea. In either case, you may not be aware that you even have this condition and most times it is discovered by a family member and is a chronic condition.
OSA is the most common type of sleep apnoea. While you’re sleeping your muscles relax allowing the soft tissue in your mouth to collapse and block your airway, causing intermittent breathing or periods when breathing becomes shallow. These events vary in length and occurrence. In many instances after an individual has experienced a breathing episode it will be followed by loud snoring, gasping, or choking sounds. This can distract from normal sleep and the effects of this may be experienced the following day with sleepiness or a feeling of tiredness.
Sleep apnoea is more common in men than women and it can affect everybody including children. Children that experience sleep apnoea also exhibits hyperactivity or can be difficult to deal with.
Treating sleep apnoea is very important to your health and well being and if it goes untreated it can cause excessive fatigue, daytime sleepiness as well as morning headaches and memory loss. This can also be a threat to your health and safety in the workplace. Sleep apnoea also raises your risk for high blood pressure, stroke, heart disease, diabetes, chronic acid reflux, and erectile dysfunction. Severe cases of sleep apnoea that go untreated can even run the risk of death.
You can get diagnosed with sleep apnoea by going to a sleep specialist. Once it has been determined that you have sleep apnoea you can begin the treatment process. Surprisingly, your dentist can assist you with your sleep apnoea.
We can provide you with oral appliance therapy which is effective in treating not only sleep apnoea but snoring as well. We will custom fit an oral sleep appliance that will help you regain the sleep that you have been missing. Oral appliance therapy is a noninvasive way to improve your sleep. And oral appliance is preferred by many patients because it is often comfortable, quiet, and convenient.
Oral appliances are typically custom fitted or custom-made digitally or by using dental impressions. These, in turn, are sent to a dental lab where your appliance is made. Once the oral appliances completed our dentists will do a fitting for you. You also get a consultation on how to use the appliance including cleaning and maintenance.
We can also assist you with sleep grinding. We can custom fit a mouth guard or bite splint to prevent you from grinding your teeth in your sleep. This should help relieve the pain and injury to your teeth associated with sleep grinding.
If you would like more information or believe you have sleep apnoea, contact our friendly team at Sapphire Dentistry on 03 9842 2677 or book online and we can consult, plan and treat you accordingly.