How your dentist can help with obstructive sleep apnea
- Posted on: Dec 15 2018
Obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is a chronic sleeping disorder that affects millions of Americans. Unfortunately, many patients go undiagnosed. With the help of a proactive dental team and a physician’s recommended sleep study, patients can get a diagnosis and find effective treatment options with their dental staff.
What is OSA?
OSA is a condition that is caused by an obstruction in the airway while a patient sleeps. It can be due to misalignment of the jaw, the tongue falling back into the throat or even excess fat on the neck area. When this happens, it can cause patients sometimes to awaken hundreds of times in one night and never reach the deep sleep they need to feel their best each day.
When a patient gets a proper diagnosis of OSA during a sleep study, their primary care physician may recommend the use of a CPAP machine. This is a device that is worn on the face while patients sleep to keep airways open throughout the night. Unfortunately, patients often don’t comply with this treatment because the machine is uncomfortable and awkward to sleep with. This is when patients are encouraged to visit the dental team of Galleria Dental Associates. We provide an alternative treatment with oral appliance therapy.
Oral appliance therapy is a treatment during which patients wear a special custom mouth guard that can be used in achieving better alignment of the jaw and in opening the airways so patients can breathe throughout the night. This particular method of treatment is more straightforward for patients and much more comfortable. The mouth guard is just as effective as the CPAP machine, but more comfortable, ensuring better compliance with treatment. Our dental team can talk with patients who have OSA and explain the process of oral appliance therapy during a consultation visit.
Ready to discuss obstructive sleep apnea treatment with a professional?
Contact Drs. Chong Lee, Joseph Oh, Kirsten Lee, and Judy Kwon of Galleria Dental Aesthetics today to book an appointment and find to about oral appliance therapy as a treatment solution for OSA. The practice can be reached at (703) 448-1020 and is located at 1600 Tysons Boulevard, Suite #120 in McLean, VA.
Posted in: sleep apnea