If you wake up feeling exhausted, or if others have complained about your loud snoring, you may be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
In many cases, Dr. James Slaman can prescribe a convenient and effective sleep apnea treatment at his Albuquerque, NM, practice that helps you improve your sleep and enjoy more energy throughout the day.
How else can sleep apnea treatment improve your life?
Sleep apnea interferes with your breathing during the night, causing you to wake up frequently. Treating this sleep disorder can improve the quality of your sleep.
Lack of sleep can have serious ripple effects on your wellbeing. Getting a better night's sleep can improve your mood, concentration, and overall emotional state.
Fewer Health Risks
Obstructive sleep apnea can have severe effects on your health. Receiving treatment from Dr. Slaman can reduce your risk for apnea-related health issues, including heart disease.
Take a look at how obstructive sleep apnea affects your breathing...
During sleep, the muscles at the back of the throat can relax and block the airway.
Chronic exhaustion and daytime sleepiness are two of the most common signs of sleep apnea.
The strain on your body can also lead to irritability, forgetfulness, mood swings, and difficulty concentrating.
Snoring is another significant sign of OSA, though not everyone who snores has sleep apnea.
More Information About Sleep Apnea and Treatment
With this condition, the soft tissues at the back of your throat periodically collapse and obstruct the flow of air when you sleep. Each time this happens, you will fully or partially wake up. Dr. Slaman integrates advanced technology at our Albuquerque office to diagnose sleep apnea and determine how well the initial treatment is working. In most cases, custom-made oral appliances are the most convenient and effective way to treat the condition.
Our advanced ultrasound tool will send sound waves into your airways to check for obstructions.
Sleep Apnea Causes
Sleep apnea is a potentially serious condition that can affect anyone of any age. However, you are at a higher risk for sleep apnea if you are an older male or if you are overweight. Patients with a naturally narrow throat or enlarged tonsils or adenoids may also be more likely to develop the condition.
OSA can cause a number of symptoms. Because you will never get a full night’s rest, chronic exhaustion and daytime sleepiness are two of the most common signs of sleep apnea. The strain on your body can also lead to irritability, forgetfulness, mood swings, and difficulty concentrating. Our Albuquerque patients may also suffer from chronic headaches, particularly in the mornings.
Snoring is another significant sign of OSA, though not everyone who snores has sleep apnea. As your soft tissues droop, the air will squeeze past them when you breathe. The resulting vibrations will cause loud snoring.
How is OSA diagnosed?
To allow Dr. Slaman to better evaluate your symptoms, you should download and complete our sleep survey. You may then send it in or bring it with you to your appointment.
This advanced ultrasound tool sends sound waves into your airways to measure the flow of your breath. The test is minimally invasive and takes less than five minutes to complete.
By comparing your results to those of an average anatomy, he can diagnose impeded air flow and sleep apnea. If you have OSA, Dr. Slaman may prescribe a custom-made oral appliance.
Your Custom Appliance: An Innovative Treatment for OSA
The device will fit comfortably over your teeth, gently moving your lower jaw forward while you sleep. This prevents your throat from closing so you can breathe freely. If you also suffer from bruxism, or chronic teeth grinding, Dr. Slaman can provide a slightly different appliance at our Albuquerque practice. Your device will both reposition your jaw and keep your top and bottom teeth from touching.
For lasting relief from OSA, Dr. Slaman may need to adjust your appliance. Fortunately, with our ultrasound technology, he can measure the difference in airflow before and after you started wearing the device. In this way, he can monitor your progress with no need for a time-consuming sleep study outside your home. Once your device is correctly adjusted, you may notice a dramatic difference in the way you feel after just a few nights.
Show me how an oral appliance treats sleep apnea...
I can deal with feeling a little tired throughout the day. Why should I bother seeing a doctor?
Sleep apnea has far more serious implications than fatigue and snoring. The condition is marked by oxygen deprivation. Over time, this can lead to a greater risk of developing a number of major health issues such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, liver complications, and metabolic syndrome.
If you are suffering from symptoms of sleep apnea, there is no better time than now to pursue the treatment you need to live a longer, healthier life. The team at our Albuquerque office can meet your unique needs and improve your quality of life.
Sleep Apnea FAQs
1. I know someone with sleep apnea and they use a CPAP machine. Why shouldn't I?
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices are effective for many with OSA, but some find the facemask uncomfortable and dislike the constant noise it creates throughout the night. By comparison, oral appliances are silent, more portable, more affordable, and for some, more comfortable.
2. How is the severity of OSA classified?
It is based on the number of episodes, or brief awakenings, you experience per night:
- 5 to 15 per hour is considered mild
- 15 to 30 per hour is considered moderate
- More than 30 per hour is considered severe
3. So I just start wearing an oral appliance and my problems are over?
If you smoke or are overweight, you will probably be advised to make healthy changes in your life that can complement the effects of your device. For some of our Albuquerque patients, these changes may eventually lead them to no longer need a device.
Dr. James Slaman DDS, PC
Dr. James Slaman has been dedicated to providing patients with exceptional care and outstanding results since 1992. He is affiliated with leading dentistry organizations, including:
- American Academy of Implant Dentistry
- American Dental Association
- Academy of General Dentistry
- American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry
To schedule a visit to our practice, simply contact us online or call us at (505) 881-7586.