If you’ve been suffering from unexplained side effects like headaches, sore throats without an accompanying illness, daytime sleepiness, or if your bed partner has told you that you’ve been snoring frequently, than you may need to be evaluated for sleep apnea.
Simply going to your regular doctor will not be enough — you will need to see a sleep specialist, especially one who works with cases where dental and other oral issues might be at play.
Why See a Dental Sleep Specialist?
Seeing someone who is trained to handle sleep disorders allows you to not only get access to proper testing equipment, but also more treatment options. If you see a dental sleep specialist, specifically, and you’re diagnosed with sleep apnea then they will work with you to find the best treatment options for your specific condition.
A dental sleep specialist can help create an oral appliance to take the place of one of those big and bulky CPAP mask that are often used for people with sleep apnea. If your sleep apnea appears to be the result of something going on in your mouth, than an oral appliance therapy, is a much easier to use device that is custom-made for your comfort.
What Are the Symptoms of Snoring and Sleep Apnea?
Snoring is just that — you snore when you sleep. However, sleep apnea is a collective term that covers a bunch of different symptoms and causes. At its most basic, sleep apnea is the obstruction of your airway when you sleep (this is why it’s also sometimes called obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA).
Symptoms can include:
- Sore throat
- Dry mouth and throat
- High blood pressure
There can also be emotional or psychological effects such as:
- Moodiness and irritability
- Inability to concentrate
If sleep apnea is left untreated, it can contribute to a higher risk of conditions like cardiovascular disease. Your bed partner can also suffer as a result of your condition being left untreated. With your snoring keeping him or her up as well will result in a lack of sleep, which is just as harmful to their health as it is yours.
What Are the Treatment Options for Snoring & Sleep Apnea?
As mentioned, the CPAP mask is the basic treatment option that is often found to be uncomfortable. There is also a modality called Oral Appliance Therapy. Oral appliance is a small plastic device that’s placed in the mouth and is worn similar to a sports mouth guard or orthodontic retainer. Worn during the night, oral appliance will help prevent the collapse of the tongue and soft tissues in the back of the throat allowing for adequate air intake by keeping the airway open.
Oral appliances can be used alone or in conjunction with other treatments for sleep related breathing disorders, such as CPAP therapy, weight management or even surgery.
Where Can I Find the Best Dental Sleep Specialist in Philadelphia?
If you need to find a dental sleep specialist in the Philadelphia region, contact eos dental sleep. Dr. Marc Levin is a specially-trained dentist treating sleep apnea and its symptoms.
Dr. Levin will take an in-depth look at your symptoms and administer a sleep test — which can be done at home in many cases — to best determine what’s really behind your snoring and sleep apnea.
Once the cause has been established, Dr. Levin will create a treatment plan specifically for you. You need to have a good night’s sleep to function effectively in life. Contact eos dental sleep today to arrange for an evaluation.