Sleep Apnea Treatment with an Oral Appliance
Sleep apnea is a serious condition that affects many patients, often resulting in sleep deprivation for the sufferer and their partner. Although continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines are commonly used to treat the condition, some patients cannot tolerate the bulky mask while they are sleeping. To help these patients achieve a good night’s sleep, Dr. Mohamed Saccoh offers oral appliances for mild to moderate sleep apnea treatment. Please contact our Joppa, MD dental office to find out if you’re a candidate for the non-invasive CPAP alternative, a sleep appliance.
Studies show that the sleep apnea patient and his or her sleep mate can struggle with sleep deprivation.
About Sleep Apnea
Unlike simple snoring, sleep apnea is defined by a lapse in breathing that can last 10 to 20 seconds or more. A patient who suffers from this condition may experience these episodes many times each night. Patients may wake up coughing and gasping for air as the body tries to reinitiate breathing.
Dr. Saccoh treats the most common type of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). With this condition, the soft tissues near the throat relax and block the airway, which can obstruct breathing. Patients who are overweight or have a large neck are more prone to developing OSA. Men are also more likely than women to have OSA, and the risk increases with age. Other risk factors include a genetic predisposition, large tonsils, a narrow airway, or a nasal obstruction from allergies, sinus problems, or a deviated septum. If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to many serious side effects, ranging from morning headaches and daytime fatigue, to heart attack and death.
The Effects of Sleep Apnea and Sleep Deprivation
Heart attack, arrhythmia
High blood pressure (hypertension)
Diabetes, diabetes complications
Falling asleep at times of low activity
Sleep Apnea Treatments
The standard treatment for sleep apnea is a CPAP machine. This device consists of an electric unit that forces air through a tube and into a patient’s airway through a face mask. The air pressure keeps the soft tissues from blocking the airway and interrupting normal breathing patterns. However, the main unit of a CPAP machine can be loud, and some patients' sleep is interrupted by the noise. CPAP treatment also requires the patient to sleep on his or her back all night, which may cause discomfort. Additionally, some patients have difficulty finding a mask that fits properly, which can cause treatment to be ineffective.
Dr. Saccoh offers sleep apnea treatment with a simple oral appliance. This custom-made device fits comfortably between the teeth, and holds the lower jaw slightly forward. This jaw position prevents the soft palate from obstructing the airway during sleep, so the patient can breathe freely and comfortably throughout the night.
Learn More about Sleep Apnea Treatment
Contact our office today to find out how you can achieve deep, restful sleep without any dangerous lapses in breathing. A simple consultation with Dr. Saccoh can reveal if you are an oral appliance candidate. For patients who currently use a CPAP machine but find it difficult and irritating, an oral appliance can offer a practical, affordable, and effective alternative.