Sleep Apnea Treatment at Guy Deyton, DDS
Sleep Apnea Treatment in Kansas City, MO
Approximately 1 in 9 adults in the US may be experiencing some form of sleep apnea, a disorder characterized by breathing problems while sleeping.
The most common form of sleep apnea is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which occurs when your tongue relaxes against the surrounding soft tissues of your throat and your windpipe is temporarily blocked while sleeping. Very short, interrupted blockages cause snoring. The greater the length of time the airway is blocked, the greater the risk. Blockages of longer than 30 seconds cause noticeable decreases in blood oxygen and increase the risk of heart problems.
What are the Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea?
- Loud snoring
- Frequent silences during sleep due to breaks in breathing (apnea)
- Choking or gasping during sleep to get air into the lungs
- Sudden awakenings to restart breathing or waking up in a sweat
- Daytime sleepiness and feeling un-refreshed by a night's sleep, including falling asleep at inappropriate times
How is Sleep Apnea Diagnosed?
Diagnosis of sleep apnea is usually done in two phases. The first phase is an at-home sleep screening test with a Level 4 Sleep Monitor, a simple but highly accurate device similar to a wristwatch, which can measure your sleep responses while at home in your own bed. It avoids the errors often introduced by requiring you to sleep in a strange setting, wired to many instruments.
The second phase in diagnosing sleep apnea is a sleep study, done in a laboratory setting. These are still required by most medical insurance plans to qualify treatment for sleep apnea as a covered medical expense. Although sleep medicine is moving away from laboratory based sleep studies for obstructive sleep apnea, the insurance industry always seems to lag behind.
- Mild forms of sleep apnea include loud snoring and 12 or less short interruptions (no more than 10 seconds) in breathing per hour.
- Moderate sleep apnea includes 13 to 25 apnetic episodes per hour of 10 seconds or longer duration.
- Severe sleep apnea includes more than 25 apnetic episodes per hour of sleep, dips in blood oxygen level of greater than 3%, or an irregular heartbeat.
Sleep apnea can cause cardiac arrhythmias (heart rhythm problems) and could potentially be fatal. If you suspect you know someone at risk, please seek help!
Snoring and Sleep Apnea Treatment Options
Treatment for snoring and sleep-time breathing disorders depends on the diagnosis and the severity of the problem. There are 4 types of interventions and therapies associated with treatment of snoring and sleep-time breathing disorders. The therapies are listed below by category with short descriptions. For a full description of their advantages, disadvantages, indications and contraindications, click here to download the Special Report on Sleep Apnea.
Behavioral modification attempts to reduce risk factors for obstructive sleep apnea. Behavior modification therapy for snoring and sleep apnea includes:
Exercise to lower your Body Mass Index (BMI) to below 25.
Change in sleep posture from back-sleeping to side-sleeping minimizes adverse tongue position with respect to airway.
Use of contoured pillows to position head to maximize airway space.
Change in dietary habits to reduce alcohol and caloric intake in the 3 hours preceding sleep.
Sleep Apnea Oral Appliance
Oral Appliances for snoring and sleep apnea are retainer-like appliances that fit over both the upper and the lower teeth. The appliances work by advancing the position of the lower jaw forward, thereby increasing the airway space in the back of the mouth. Most oral appliances allow patients to freely open and close, but maintain a forward posture of the lower jaw.
CPAP Treatment for Sleep Apnea
CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure Device. CPAP is a respiratory therapy device that blows compressed air through the nostrils at a prescribed pressure to keep the airway open.
UPPP Surgical Treatment for Sleep Apnea
Uvulopalatopharyngoplasy, commonly called UPPP, is a surgical procedure to change the shape of back of the soft palate to increase the airway opening. Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy may also be indicated to change the shape of the throat and increase airway space.
For more information on Sleep Apnea in the Kansas City, MO area call Guy Deyton, DDS at (816) 587-6444 today!
Treatment of Snoring and Sleep Apnea are not recognized by the ADA as specialty areas and require no specific educational training to advertise this service.