Your dentist can assist with conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea
- Posted on: Dec 15 2018
When patients think of visiting the dentist, they often think of cleanings and fillings. However, some dentists provide services outside the traditional scope of dentistry. Dr. John Highsmith of Clyde, NC provides solutions for patients who have been diagnosed with a sleeping disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea.
What is obstructive sleep apnea?
To patients in Clyde, NC, obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is a sleeping disorder that is caused by a blockage in the airway. It results in patients never reaching the deep, restorative levels of sleep they need to feel their best each day. It can also increase their risk of developing medical problems such as depression, anxiety, and heart problems. This is because they stop breathing sometimes hundreds of times in one night, causing their body to wake up repeatedly. This can significantly disrupt the sleep process and leave patients tired every day, regardless of how long they spent in bed.
Symptoms of OSA
The most noticeable symptoms of OSA are chronic snoring and gasping when sleeping. Sleeping partners may report that the patient stops breathing for many seconds before gasping awake. Patients themselves may notice that they are tired each day and are experiencing poor memory and concentration. They may be struggling with social and work activities, finding it challenging to function each day through the fatigue.
How can my dentist help?
When patients are diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, their primary physician may encourage them to use a CPAP machine. This is a device patients wear at night over their nose and mouth to keep the airways open. However, many dislike this device as they find it uncomfortable and difficult to travel with. Instead, patients can visit their dentist to learn about oral appliance therapy. This is the use of a special mouth guard custom-made to open the airways while remaining comfortable and easy to use.
Have you been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea?
If you have a diagnosis of OSA and are tired of using your CPAP machine, we welcome you into our practice to learn about the benefits of using oral appliance therapy instead! Call Dr. John Highsmith today at (828) 627-9282 to schedule an appointment at the practice, conveniently located at 78 Nelson Street in Clyde, NC.
Posted in: Obstructive Sleep Apnea