Sleep Apnea Treatment in Newburyport
Patients who snore consistently often believe this habit, while a bit annoying to bed partners, is harmless. However, loud snoring is often the first indication that a person is suffering from sleep apnea. Apnea is a Greek word meaning without breath, and sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that causes patients to stop breathing for ten or more seconds at a time during sleep. These apnea incidences occur 100s of times each night triggering an emergency response, increasing heart rate, and restarting breathing. Over time, sleep apnea leads to numerous adverse health effects including:
- Excessive daytime sleepiness, exhaustion
- Elevated blood pressure due to the increased strain on the heart caused by the repeated awakenings throughout the night
- Lack of concentration, memory loss, and behavioral changes due to lack of sleep
In order to relieve the adverse effects of sleep apnea, patients traditionally use continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) systems, and while these systems offer significant relief for most patients, some struggle to adjust to the sounds, smells, and feel of CPAP masks and airflow. Many are considered CPAP intolerant because they are unable to sleep peacefully while utilizing their CPAP systems. For these patients, we offer oral appliance therapy as an alternative.
An oral appliance adjusts the jaw to sit slightly forward keeping the airway open. Custom fitted for superior comfort, oral appliances are light weight, portable, and effective. Even those patients who choose to utilize CPAP systems may wish to opt for a combination of the two treatment options. CPAPs are bulky and don’t travel well, but it’s simple enough to bring the small oral appliance anywhere.
There are numerous types of appliances available, and Dr. Peter St. Clair, Dr. Charles Beliveau, and the Dental Partners of Newburyport team are happy to help patients find the solution that’s right for them. If you have recently been diagnosed with sleep apnea or you believe you may be suffering from sleep apnea, contact us to schedule a sleep apnea consultation today.