Sleep Apnea Assessment
Are you feeling tired today? There are a myriad of reasons why someone might have trouble sleeping. One of these, sleep apnea, is a common but serious sleeping disorder that shouldn't be ignored. Luckily, we can help rule out some critical concerns with a sleep apnea assessment right in our office at Sleep Apnea Solutions of Cincinnati: Our goal is to help you figure out what course of treatment is best for you.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea or OSA is a disorder that causes a person to stop breathing when they're asleep. The airway gets blocked resulting in the lungs not getting enough oxygen. This leads to snoring and choking sounds as a person struggles to breathe, causing them to wake up throughout the night, and feel unrested the next morning. Even worse, prolonged obstructive sleep apnea can lead to greater struggles such as elevated stress, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, strokes, and obesity, among others.
While only your physician can properly diagnose obstructive sleep apnea, our office can screen for symptoms of those at risk for the disorder. Communication between dentist and patient is key, as we will most likely begin by asking you a series of questions relating to your specific battles with sleep apnea. We will inquire about symptoms such as dry mouth, headaches, and general fatigue. Then we will look for physical signs as we examine the upper portions of your body including your neck, tongue, and tonsils. Armed with this information and a report on your medical history, we will be well equipped to best determine your specific situation.
A sleep apnea assessment typically involves an overnight stay at a sleep disorder center and includes monitoring of your breathing and other bodily functions. Tests range from nocturnal polysomnography where you'll be hooked up to machines to simplified versions that you can do at home.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
We certainly recognize that CPAP treatment is the gold standard. We also realize that not everyone needs CPAP or can tolerate it. Options for treatment of obstructive sleep apnea include personalized oral appliances that patients wear to help them sleep throughout the night as well as continued assessment and monitoring to ensure these devices are helping in the long run. Positive airway pressure or PAP therapy includes a variety of devices including CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), BiPAP (bilevel positive airway pressure), and automatic positive airway pressure or APAP. These machines work by keeping airways open and preventing them from collapsing during sleep, allowing patients to breathe easily.
Lighter cases of sleep apnea call for less direct action. Our dentists will most likely recommend a lifestyle change such as weight loss or medicine for your allergies. If you smoke they will ask you to quit. On the other hand, in extreme cases, surgery might be suggested if all other options have been exhausted.
After a thorough evaluation and proper testing, our properly trained dentists will help determine which treatment option is best for you. We work closely with sleep specialists in the area to make sure you have the proper treatment. We will work together to provide long-term care for your obstructive sleep apnea. You (and your partner) will thank us, so call us at (513) 748-6446 today!