A Dentist’s Role In Sleep Apnea

A good night’s sleep helps restore the mind and body. However, it is estimated that 18 million people in America do not get a good night’s rest due to the fact that they have sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is a serious condition that causes a person to stop breathing for 10 seconds or more at night. According to J. Micheal, DDS, FAGD, dentists are often the first ones to diagnose sleep apnea because patients typically see them more than their doctor. A dentist may refer the patient to a sleep medicine specialist. The patient may have to return to the dentist for further treatment. The treatment that is recommended is contingent upon the severity of the disorder. Losing weight, quitting smoking and altering the sleep position can help treat sleep apnea. A dental appliance can also be used to treat sleep apnea. Patients with severe sleep apnea may be required to use a continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP machine. This device keeps the airway open by distributing continuous air pressure. It is important for you to have an open and honest conversation with your dentist if you suspect that you have sleep apnea. Morning headaches, insomnia, dry mouth and excessive snoring are some of the symptoms of sleep apnea. To receive a complimentary dental sleep apnea training consultation, please call us at (818)... read more

How Doctors Diagnose Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a condition wherein a person unknowingly stops breathing while asleep, only to start breathing again a few seconds later. Frequent incidents of sleep apnea can lower the quality of sleep and typically results in excessive daytime sleepiness. Obstructions within the throat, mouth, or nose, can cause sleep apnea, but such obstructions are not always discovered by a physician’s standard visual evaluation. At this point, a physician may refer their patient to a sleep specialist or an ear, nose, and throat doctor for further evaluation. A sleep specialist may perform an overnight examination of the patient known as polysomnography, whereby a patient is connected to monitoring equipment while they sleep in the controlled environment of a sleep center. At-home polysomnography equipment also exists for full-night sleep studies that do not require any sort of special intervention, such as in the case of a split-sleep study where they wake the patient and connect them to a positive pressure breathing apparatus. Read testimonials of some of our valued clients who have taken our dental sleep apnea... read more

The Afib/OSA Profile

It is estimated that 2.7 to 6.7 million people have Afib. There are 25 million people living with obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA. One percent of the patients in my office have both conditions. The Afib/OSA Profile My typical patient is a middle-aged person. Both men and women can have Afib and OSA. Many patients complain that they have an irregular heartbeat, night sweats and cannot sleep. Some patients also show up exhibiting symptoms of sleep apnea, such as shortness of breath, extreme fatigue and lightheadedness. Additionally, it is common for women with sleep apnea to have a neck circumference of 16 inches and men to have a neck circumference of 17 inches. AFIB And The Heart AFIB is a type of arrhythmia that causes the top and bottom chambers of the heart to beat out of sync. People who have AFIB are four to five times more likely to have a stroke. It is estimated that 15 to 20 percent of ischemic strokes are caused by AFIB. What Do OSA And AFIB Have In Common? OSA often occurs during midlife and older age. It causes frequent interruptions in breathing. A person can stop breathing for 10 to 30 seconds. OSA can cause increased blood pressure and irregular heartbeat. These are the same symptoms that a person with Afib may experience. What Should I Do? Both OSA and AFIB are very treatable. You should see your primary care doctor if you notice palpitations and an irregular heartbeat. Make sure you tell your doctor if you snore or have morning headaches. Your primary care doctor may refer you to a... read more

Sleep Apnea Facts

Approximately 1 in 5 American adults have at least mild symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which amounts to nearly 18 million adults. About 1 in 15 people with OSA have severe symptoms, which causes considerable effects on their health and well-being. Only about 20 percent of people with OSA know they have it and are receiving any treatment for their conditions. Anyone can have OSA, including kids. Risk factors for OSA include being older than 50, smoking and going through menopause. Genetics are also important in the development of OSA, and up to 25 percent of people with OSA have a genetic predisposition to the condition. People with OSA are at risk for a broad array of health problems. The sleep deprivation caused by OSA often leads to obesity, heart disease, diabetes and hypertension. OSA also contributes to depression, accidents, and mental errors at work. People with OSA have an increased risk of causing a motor vehicle... read more

Oral Appliance Therapy: A Convenient Treatment for Sleep Apnea

If sleep apnea has been a problem that you’ve faced, oral appliance therapy may be a good solution for you. The appliance allows you to breathe easily by supporting your jaw in a healthy position while you sleep. It is easy to care for, comfortable, portable, and makes virtually no noise; many patients believe that it outperforms a CPAP mask. If your dentist decides that an oral appliance therapy is the right choice for you, a prescription for a custom-made sleep apnea appliance will be written. In addition, you will also receive a referral to a qualified oral appliance therapy dentist to help meet your sleep apnea needs. Many medical insurance providers will help cover the cost of the appliance. More than 100 models have received FDA clearance, so you and your dentist can find your perfect fit! Breathe with ease- consider oral appliance therapy... read more

Snoring – How It’s Diagnosed and Treated

The American Academy Of Dental Sleep has stated that your sleep affects every aspect of your life and health. It is essential for looking and feeling your best. Sleep problems can harm your health. Snoring is one of the most common sleeping issues. Snoring Snoring occurs when the tissue in the upper airway vibrates as one sleeps. Men are more likely to snore, but this problem can also occur in women. Pregnant and menopausal women are more likely to snore. Alcohol use, smoking and obesity can also cause snoring. People who snore are likely to disturb the person with whom they are sleeping. They may also wake themselves up. Snoring can be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. Diagnosing Snoring A sleep specialist can give you an evaluation in order to determine whether sleep apnea is the cause of your snoring. You may be given a sleep apnea home test or an overnight sleep test. The sleep specialist will make a diagnosis after interpreting the data. Treating Snoring Studies have shown that oral appliances are effective for treating snoring. They keep the airways open by supporting the jaw. Your doctor can prescribe you a custom-made oral appliance. Sleeping on your side, losing weight, quitting smoking and avoiding alcohol consumption are also helpful ways to avoid... read more

Why Add Dental Sleep Medicine to Your Practice

Obstructive Sleep Apnea is a problem that affects approximately 30 million people in the United States, yet only a small percentage are receiving proper care for their condition. Dentists are a valuable resource for patients who seek treatment alternatives. Adding Dental Sleep Medicine to your practice is crucial in three ways. First, you have the opportunity to help fill a “treatment gap” for Obstructive Sleep Apnea therapy. Second, you and your team can deliver to your patients a higher standard of comprehensive care. Third, you can offer a service that is not only fiscally, but also morally rewarding. The benefits will resonate through every facet of your office. The “gold standard” of care is the CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) machine. By increasing the pressure inside the airway, CPAP serves to prevent airway collapse from the tongue, soft palate and excess weight around the neck. While there are no therapy options more effective than CPAP, because close to 50% of patients so prescribed are non compliant, the need for an alternative is acute. Where does this leave patients who are seeking better sleep and better health, but cannot tolerate the treatment they have been prescribed? Oral Appliances are a highly effective, non-invasive treatment modality for those patients who have failed to benefit from CPAP use, or who have been tested at levels too low to require this more aggressive therapy. When diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea, many physicians only give the patient one option for care, independent of the severity of the condition. Choosing to incorporate Dental Sleep Medicine into your practice permits you to assess each case on... read more

Dentists Help Treat Sleep Apnea

It is estimated that 18 million people in America suffer from sleep apnea, a condition where a person has their breathing interrupted during sleep. It is a potentially life-threatening condition. Fortunately, a trip to the dentist can let you rest (and sleep) easier. View this video testimonial from a patient who received a successful dental sleep apnea treatment from Dr. Greenman, a dentist in Westlake Village, CA –... read more

Disaster relief for Nepal earthquake victims

The April 25th earthquake in Nepal shook the world and instantly put the victims of the tragedy in the sights of numerous charitable organizations. It was a gigantic 7.8 magnitude quake that most critically hit an area around 50 miles northwest of the city of Kathmandu. One major group that wanted to help was the American Dental Association and other upstanding members of the dental industry, such as Ivoclar Vivadent and Henry Schein. The ADA foundation is working to gather donations that can help dentists provide their much needed care in the areas of Nepal affected by the quake. Henry Schein has guaranteed half a million dollars in health donations, which includes thousands of much needed bandages, millions of gloves, and around two million surgical masks. They are also donating thousands of dental hygiene products, mainly toothbrushes and toothpaste, to the area as well. Ivoclar Vivadent has given $100,000 to the Red Cross and is in continual contact with the Nepal Dental Association to provide sustained... read more

CPAP is Not the Only Option for Sleep Apnea Sufferers

Some 30 million Americans suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a sleep disorder that causes them to stop breathing many times during the night while they sleep. OSA causes the sufferer to wake up and quickly fall asleep again every time they stop breathing. Someone with OSA does not realize that they are waking up like this during the night, but they get up in the morning feeling tired and suffer from fatigue during the day. The most noticeable symptom of OSA is snoring. Sleep apnea sufferers who seek medical treatment are usually prescribed a forced airway machine called a CPAP. This treatment is so common that other treatment options are often overlooked. CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure; the sleeper wears a mask that is attached to the machine and forces air through the throat to keep it from collapsing. This keeps the airway open and allows free breathing all night. CPAP is a proven treatment and it works; the problem is that many people cannot tolerate the use of the mask. Some people develop throat irritation from the constant forcing of air, while others simply find the mask to be uncomfortable and cannot sleep with it on. For these OSA patients, there are alternatives to CPAP. Doctors often recommend surgery to cure OSA. The most common OSA surgery, uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, removes the flap of skin (the uvula) at the back of the throat, and in some extreme cases, part of the tongue. Surgery is painful and always has risks, and surgery for sleep apnea does not always entirely solve the problem. Another alternative is an oral appliance.... read more

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