ThinkstockPhotos 612022198 1 Emerald Isle Smiles: Aubrey Myers, DDS Emerald Isle NC

Do you or your partner snore loudly, or wake up suddenly- gasping for air?

Obstructive sleep apnea remains a widely underdiagnosed condition in the United States. A growing health concern, sleep apnea is a chronic and progressive sleep related disorder that has been scientifically linked to serious medical conditions. To prevent the development of risk factors associated with sleep apnea, patients are encouraged to seek help as soon as possible. Sleep apnea can detrimentally impact your overall health and your oral health when left untreated.

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea occurs when the airway is blocked by collapsed soft tissues at the back of the throat, causing patients to wake up with a loud snore or gasping for air up to 500 times a night. Patients wake suddenly due to a lack of oxygen flow to your body, triggered by a momentary cessation in normal breathing due to the blocked airway. Interrupted sleep can interfere with a patients quality of life. Patients may feel chronically fatigued, experience headaches, or feel like it is hard to focus on tasks.

Many patients have no memory of waking during their sleep and it may be difficult for patients to notice that they are experiencing obstructive sleep apnea. Be sure to read the risk factors and symptoms of OSA so that you can experience any changes in your sleep patterns. Long term, sleep apnea can begin to deteriorate your overall health. Sleep apnea has been linked to an increased risk of a heart attack, stroke, cardiovascular disease, and even sudden death. If you are concerned that you are at risk for sleep apnea or experience any of the common symptoms, discuss your concerns with Dr. Myers- it could be life-saving.

Risk Factors of Sleep Apnea

If any of these sleep apnea risk factors apply to you, let us know right away. A simple, non-invasive sleep study can determine if you have OSA and could help you find the treatment you need to protect your health. Dr. Myers can work with you to coordinate care with your general physician.

  • Patients over 40
  • Large neck diameter
  • Family history of OSA
  • Diabetes
  • Male
  • Obesity

All patients are at risk of developing sleep apnea. However, certain demographics are at a higher risk. Knowing your risk factors and the symptoms of sleep apnea can help patients receive treatment before developing secondary health issues.

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

If you experience any of these symptoms or notice changes in the way you feel when you wake up on a regular basis, let Dr. Myers know. While snoring is not always an indication of OSA, many patients who snore do have sleep apnea.

  • Chronic headaches(especially in the morning)
  • Waking gasping for air
  • Loud snoring
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Depression
  • Trouble concentrating

Treating Sleep Apnea

Emerald Isle dentist Dr. Aubrey Myers offers personalized consultations and screenings for sleep apnea. A highly trained and experienced dentist, Dr. Myers works closely with your physician or a sleep specialist to achieve an accurate diagnosis and help you receive appropriate treatment for sleep apnea. Patients can often undergo a sleep study test that can usually be performed in the comfort of their own home. The sleep study will chart your sleep patterns for a better understanding of your condition.

Treatment options vary depending on the cause of your sleep apnea. Oral sleep appliances are an alternative to the CPAP for many patients with mild to moderate sleep apnea. They are a common solution to help keep the airway open while sleeping. The custom fit dental appliance is much like a sports mouthguard and is designed to realign the jaw during sleep.

Schedule A Consultation

If you suspect you or your partner may have sleep apnea contact our Emerald Isle, NC dentist office to learn more about how we can help you get a better nights rest. You can call our office, or request an appointment online. We welcome new and returning patients from Cedar Point, Cape Carteret, Bogue, Emerald Isle and surrounding communities.