Sleep apnea, a condition in which patients stop breathing repeatedly for very brief periods of time while a sleep, poses serious health risks. Fortunately, effective treatment is available for this condition. Patients have a number of different options to treat and eliminate the symptoms of their sleep apnea.
The first step in getting effective sleep apnea treatment is to undergo a sleep study to confirm the presence of the condition, as well as the type. There are different kinds of sleep apnea treatment and the interventions used for one type are unlikely to be effective for another.
After you have a confirmed sleep apnea diagnosis, you can begin to pursue treatment. It may be helpful to consult with an oral surgeon. While surgery may not be indicated in all cases of sleep apnea, this specialist is well-versed in the structures of the face and jaw that can contribute to the conditions that promote apneic episodes. For example, if the jaw is positioned in a way that encourages the tongue or other soft tissues at the rear of the throat to collapse and obstruct the airway opening, it can cause sleep apnea.
The oral surgeon will evaluate your facial structures to determine the factors that are likely contributing to your sleep apnea and make treatment recommendations based on those findings. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) masks are often highly effective in treating sleep apnea, but many patients find them cumbersome and don’t comply with the treatment. If you have tried a CPAP mask or oral appliance therapy and not experienced any improvement in symptoms, then surgery may help to address the problem.
You can–and should–get effective treatment for sleep apnea to reduce the health risks, like high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke, associated with this condition as well as improving your quality of life by eliminating issues like daytime drowsiness.
Call our office to schedule an evaluation and learn more about the interventions that may help you!