Do you wake up in the morning feeling groggy and tired, regardless of what time you went to bed? Do your shins hurt because your partner keeps kicking you to try to stop the snoring? Do you have consistent headaches or a dry, sore throat in the morning? Not getting enough sleep is no laughing matter. A good night’s sleep is critical to overall health and wellbeing. Yet, many people blame their inability to sleep well on stress at work or big changes in their personal lives. While that may be the case for some people, another common sleep issue is sleep apnea.
Patients suffering from sleep apnea have many episodes each night in which they completely stop breathing. These episodes can last 10 seconds or longer and can occur as many as 90 times each hour. With that in mind, it’s easy to see why people with sleep apnea wake up feeling tired and like they haven’t slept at all. Sleep apnea can cause patients to snore or gasp for air as they wake from sleep. However, more than just a lack of sleep can harm their health. Sleep apnea can cause more complications to a patient’s health because oxygen is being restricted from the brain.
Once a patient is diagnosed with sleep apnea, a doctor will typically prescribe a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine. While this apparatus is effective in preventing sleep apnea episodes by providing air to the patient’s nose and mouth, many patients don’t use it. The machine includes a mask that is strapped to the patient’s face and is connected to a small machine that sits on a nightstand. Some patients complain that the masks are uncomfortable, and others don’t like the sound they make when running. Therefore, patients aren’t getting necessary treatment, because it’s sitting unused in a drawer or on a nightstand.
However, patients have another option. Dr. Kristen Adams can work with patients to create a dental appliance that shifts the lower jaw forward and ensures that patients don’t stop breathing during their sleep. This appliance is not only small and comfortable, it’s easy to use, easy to clean, and easy to travel with. Many patients compare it to a sports mouthguard.
If you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea and are not happy with the CPAP machine, call Dr. Adams today to schedule an appointment.