About Obstructive Sleep Apnea

About Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Recently the general public has become increasingly aware of sleep apnea which is being diagnosed at sleep centers throughout the United States. The reason for this exposure is because research has shown sleep apnea’s relation to many medical problems. There are now many television and newsprint stories highlighting obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is linked to:

Obstructive Sleep Apnea occurs when the muscles in throat relax and the tongue completely blocks the airway. With no breathing, the body’s oxygen level drops and the heart rate increases. When the sleeper’s lack of oxygen is sensed by the brain, the person awakens or partially awakens, gasping for breath to restart airflow. People are not usually aware of these apneas or “awakenings” but because they do not get restful sleep, they exhibit excessive daytime sleepiness.

Treatment of OSA with Dental Sleep Medicine

Oral appliances are classified a first line treatment for snoring and mild to moderate sleep apnea by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Their recommendation is that dentists with proper training and education provide this treatment for patients.Oral appliances maybe used in the following situations:

Statistics General Information about Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Risk Factors for OSA

Health Consequences of OSA