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Posts for tag: sleep apnea

By Heritage Hunt Dental
March 11, 2022
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea  

Did you know that your dentist doesn’t just treat your teeth, but sleep apnea as well? Dental sleep medicine focuses on oral appliances for treating Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). This condition is recognizable by the tissue in the back of an individual’s throat collapsing as they sleep, blocking the airways throughout the night. This is a serious condition that causes many short and long-term effects, so it’s important you schedule your appointment with Dr. Chris Houser at Heritage Hunt Dental in Gainesville, VA, right away. Here are several signs of sleep apnea and how you can manage this sleep dentistry condition.

Common sleep apnea signs

If you have sleep apnea, you may notice one or more of these signs:

  • Frequent Snoring: Snoring, one of the most well-known signs of sleep apnea, occurs when your throat muscles vibrate when you sleep. If you have sleep apnea, your throat muscles relax and your airway becomes narrower when you sleep, which increases vibrations and worsens snoring.
  • Gasping and Choking: Sleep apnea occurs when you stop breathing multiple times during the night, usually for a few seconds at a time. Gasping and choking serve an important purpose because it opens your airway and allows you to begin breathing again. Unfortunately, chronic oxygen deprivation can lead to strokes, high blood pressure, and type II diabetes.
  • Fatigue: When your sleep is constantly interrupted, it's hard to feel rested and energetic. Fatigue can be a sign that you have sleep apnea.
  • Difficulty Concentrating: In addition to fatigue, you may also notice that it's harder to concentrate. Difficulty concentrating can be particularly dangerous if your job involves operating heavy machinery or driving for hours at a time.
  • Morning Headaches: Oxygen deprivation can also lead to morning headaches. Although the headaches usually go away an hour or two after you wake up, they can be a warning sign of sleep apnea.
  • Irritability: Sleep deprivation can also affect your moods, leaving you feeling irritable and depressed.

How is sleep apnea treated?

Oral Appliance Therapy is the key to treatment and healthy life. Your dentist will give you an oral appliance that you’ll wear during the night. A mandibular repositioning device moves your jaw forward while you sleep to keep your airways open. Another option is tongue retaining devices that work by keeping your tongue in place so it can’t block your breathing. 

Your dental team offers a low-tech solution for your sleep apnea. These dental sleep medicine treatments ensure that you and your spouse or significant other can sleep soundly once again. Are you interested in learning how sleep dentistry can help you beat sleep apnea? Call Dr. Chris Houser at Heritage Hunt Dental in Gainesville, VA, at 703-754-5800.

By Heritage Hunt Dental
October 05, 2021
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea   Toothaches  

The dental staff at Heritage Hunt Dental provide care for dental issues associated with sleep apnea at their Gainesville, VA, office. The dentist, Dr. Chris Houser, provides quality care for those suffering from toothaches in Gainesville, VA.

What is Sleep Apnea?

According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, sleep apnea or obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a breathing disorder that keeps you from breathing during sleep. The passageway is blocked during sleep several times throughout the night. When the passageway is blocked, the amount of air going to your lungs is limited. Now your body is deprived of Oxygen, limiting your breathing.

The air blockage is usually caused by tissue in the back of the throat collapsing. As the muscles relax during sleep, the tissue becomes relaxed and falls back. If you sleep on your back, gravity causes the tongue to fall back and cover the breathing passageway. The breathing passageway is narrowed, causing the tissue to vibrate in the back of the throat while breathing. This results in snoring, gasping for air, or silent breathing pauses. These episodes cause a person to wake up, resulting in broken sleep.

The American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine (AADSM) states a person stops breathing about 100 times per night due to sleep apnea. These episodes can last from a few seconds to one minute. These disturbances can result in waking up unrefreshed, with morning headaches, and lack of concentration throughout the day.

How Does Sleep Apnea Contribute to Toothaches?

Sleep apnea contributes to oral health issues like sleep bruxism. Sleep bruxism is the grinding of teeth or clenching of the jaw during sleep. It usually causes involuntary grinding during sleep. The Cleveland Clinic states teeth grinding causes toothaches. The repetitive motion of the grinding creates wearing of the teeth. When a person grinds their teeth in their sleep, up to 250 pounds of force is applied, resulting in toothaches and jaw pain. Stress and anxiety are other causes of bruxism. A dentist, like Dr. Chris Houser in Gainesville, VA  can do an oral examination for signs of sleep apnea and sleep bruxism.

How Can  A Dentist Treat Sleep Apnea?

The AADSM recommends seeing a dentist that uses Oral Appliance Therapy. The dentist creates a retainer to fit over your teeth that's worn during sleep. The device moves your jaw forward to keep the airway open and prevent teeth from grinding. The dentist creates a device personally designed for your teeth to improve your sleep and health.

If you want more information about sleep apnea in Gainesville, VA, call (703) 754-5800 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Chris Houser at Heritage Hunt Dental.

By Heritage Hunt Dental
September 21, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea  

Do you snore loudly and feel tired during the day? You may have sleep apnea. Your Gainesville, VA, dentist, Dr. Chris Houser of Heritage Hunt Dental, offers a simple appliance that can improve your breathing if you're diagnosed with the sleep disorder.

Sleep apnea symptoms

It's certainly possible to snore without having sleep apnea, but loud snoring is a common sign. Other symptoms can include morning headaches, depression, trouble concentrating, memory issues, irritability, mood swings and weight gain. People who have sleep apnea often feel exhausted even though they've spent eight hours in bed.

Due to sleep apnea, you'll stop breathing for seconds at a time many times throughout the night. The disorder can occur if your tongue falls against your throat or your throat walls collapse while you sleep. If you frequently gasp or choke while you sleep, sleep apnea may be the reason. These actions force you to start breathing once again.

Why it's a bad idea to ignore sleep apnea

Breathing pauses prevent your brain from receiving the oxygen it needs and can increase carbon dioxide levels. Over time, these issues can have a devastating effect on your health.

If you don't receive treatment for your sleep apnea, you may be more likely to develop certain health conditions. Heart attack, diabetes, stroke and high blood pressure can all occur as a result of the sleep disorder.

How to stop sleep apnea

If a sleep study reveals that you have sleep apnea, you'll need treatment to protect your health and help you get a better night's sleep. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines are often used to treat sleep apnea. The machines send a constant stream of air into your throat and keep your airway open. Unfortunately, not everyone can adjust to using the machine. Some people find the masks uncomfortable, while others think CPAP machines are just too noisy.

Your dentist offers oral appliances that can reduce your sleep apnea symptoms. During a visit to the Gainesville dental office, you'll be fitted with an appliance that you'll wear when you sleep. The appliance holds your jaw forward and prevents your tongue from blocking your airway. The oral appliance is small and portable, making it easy to take it with you when you travel.

Don't let sleep apnea harm your health! Call your dentist in Gainesville, VA, Dr. Houser of Heritage Hunt Dental, at (703) 754-5800 to schedule your appointment.

By Heritage Hunt Dental
January 02, 2019
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea  

Sleep ApneaConcerned about your sleep apnea? Read below to learn how your dentist in Gainesville, VA, Dr. Chris Houser, can help treat it!

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a sleep-related breathing disorder that affects a person's respiratory airflow. The airflow is interrupted when soft tissues, like the tongue, collapse at the back of your throat while you're asleep, causing the windpipe to be partially closed off. The soft tissue then vibrates, which results in snoring.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea occurs when the upper airway is blocked and significant airflow disruption occurs, complete blockage of airflow may result as well.

Someone suffering from sleep apnea may wake up several times a night. These awakenings are called micro-arousals and prevent deep and restful sleep.

Lack of Sleep

Approximately 168 million people reported feeling drowsy while driving, according to the National Sleep Foundation's 2005 Sleep in America poll.

Getting enough sleep isn't just important for your health, but for the welfare of others, as well. If you're not getting enough sleep and decide to drive your children to school, that may result in you falling asleep at the wheel. This may lead to a serious accident where serious injury and trauma is sustained.

There are many diseases that are linked to a lack of sleep, so make sure that you ask your Gainesville doctor about how he can help you cope with, or treat, certain illnesses to improve the quality of your sleep. For example, Dr. Houser can outfit you with an oral appliance to wear while you sleep. This helps reposition the jaw and tongue so that there is no obstruction of the airway while you sleep, thus decreasing the effects of sleep apnea.

Need to speak with your dentist?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding sleep apnea treatment, then it's a good idea to contact Dr. Houser's Gainesville, VA, office today at (703) 754-5800!

By Heritage Hunt Dental
October 23, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea  

Find out If Your Loud Snoring or Poor Sleep Could Be Due to This Common Sleep Disorder.

Do you keep your partner up most nights with your terrible snoring? Do you wake up each morning feeling like a zombie despite getting a full night’s rest? If you said “yes” to either question, then you may be dealing with sleep apnea. Read below to learn more about the telltale symptoms of sleep apnea and visit our Gainesville, VA, dentist, Dr. Chris Houser, for personal guidance on how to manage your symptoms and finally get the restorative sleep you need.

What Are the Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea?

There are many people who have sleep apnea but don’t realize it. That’s because so many factors can contribute to poor sleep that it isn’t always easy to tell whether this sleep disorder could be to blame. Common symptoms include,

  • Extreme daytime fatigue
  • Loud, chronic snoring
  • Gasping for breath in the middle of the night
  • Poor concentration
  • Mental fog
  • Increased irritability and mood swings

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s a good idea to talk to a sleep specialist who can help you determine what’s causing your sleep problems.

What Happens If I Don’t Treat My Sleep Apnea?

While sleep apnea can profoundly affect the quality of your sleep, this effect isn’t the only issue that the disorder can cause. Sleep apnea is a chronic condition so there is no cure, but it’s still important that you get the treatment you need to manage your symptoms. If you don’t treat sleep apnea, it can greatly impact your general health, as well, as the disorder has been linked to serious health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and hypertension.

How Can a Dentist Help Me?

You might be surprised to learn that our Gainesville, VA, dentist could actually help you manage your sleep apnea symptoms. If you’ve been told that you have a milder case of sleep apnea, you could benefit from oral appliance therapy. Even though CPAP therapy is still the most common way to treat sleep apnea, it isn’t the only option.

Instead of wearing a facemask night after night to prevent the airways from collapsing while you sleep, our dentist can create a simple oral device that looks like a retainer and covers your upper and lower teeth to prevents airway obstructions while you sleep.

Intrigued? Contact us Today!

Are you living with sleep apnea in Gainesville, VA? If so, then you may be wondering whether we can help you get your symptoms under control. You may even be wondering whether you can swap out your CPAP for a simpler oral appliance. Don’t hesitate to get all of your questions about sleep apnea treatment answered; call Heritage Hunt Dental today at (703) 754-5800!

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