Thousand Oaks, Agoura Hills and Westlake Village, CA
Did you know that approximately 25 million adults in America suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)? OSA is a sleep breathing disorder that occurs when the airway becomes partially or completely blocked.
If you have sleep apnea, when these blockages occur, your brain and body react as if you are choking by gasping for air. Every time one of these blockages happens, it disrupts your sleep, and these blockages can occur as many as 30 to 60 times an hour. As the sufferer, you may be completely unaware of these occurrences while you sleep.
The consequences of OSA go far beyond lost sleep. A patient with sleep apnea has a much higher risk of developing other serious health problems such as cardiac disease, high blood pressure, stroke, depression or obesity.
Treating obstructive sleep apnea
If you or a family member has been diagnosed with OSA, then you probably are familiar with a CPAP machine. Standing for continuous positive airway pressure, a CPAP machine has been the go-to treatment for sleep apnea patients. However, an OSA patient with a CPAP machine typically has to use it whenever they sleep for the rest of their lives.
Users of the CPAP report skin irritation from the mask, and that it is often uncomfortable to use while sleeping. Also, a CPAP machine is bulky and can be inconvenient when traveling overnight.
Did you know there are other treatment options? Sleep apnea dentists, such as Dr. Kathleen Carson at Integrative Dental Arts, treat the disorder through oral appliance therapy. An oral appliance prevents OSA by keeping the lower jaw in a forward position and thus maintaining an open airway.
Using an oral appliance is less invasive and more convenient than using a CPAP machine. Oral appliance therapy also has a significantly higher success rate in treating the disorder.
You can find many anti-snoring mouthpieces or oral appliances over the counter. However, the oral appliances made by a certified sleep apnea dentist are of a higher quality. These professional-grade appliances also are custom-made to ensure a perfect fit for every patient, allowing you to wear one comfortably throughout the night without disrupting sleep.
If you or a member of your family has OSA or is suffering from the symptoms of the disorder, call Integrative Dental Arts by calling (818) 889-0400 to schedule a consultation.
Integrative Dental Arts provides oral health care with a holistic approach for patients in the Agoura Hills, Thousand Oaks, and Westlake Village communities of southern California.