Sleep Apnea Treatment in Carrollton, TX
Obstructive sleep apnea or OSA is a sleep-related breathing disorder caused by obstruction of the upper airway. When the soft tissues at the back of the throat collapse and block the air passages during sleep, the level of oxygen in the blood drops. This causes the brain to awaken the sleeper, sometimes hundreds of times each night, just enough to take a rescue breath.
Because sleep is interrupted multiple times, the patient feels extremely tired during the day and may fall asleep at work or in class. Sleep apnea can be fatal if the person falls asleep while driving. Sleep apnea is also related to serious conditions like high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, heart disease, diabetes and weight gain. Sleep apnea prevents you from getting the good and restorative sleep your body needs in order to function properly.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
While snoring is a common symptom of sleep apnea, it is not the only symptom. Patients also report frequent sleep interruptions, waking up in the middle of the night choking and gasping, extreme tiredness during the day, difficulty focusing on tasks, irritability and depression, and low productivity.
If you experience any of the above symptoms, see your Carrollton, TX dentist right away. Early diagnosis and treatment is important to prevent complications. Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the most common type of sleep apnea. Central Sleep Apnea is much less common. It occurs when the brain fails to signal the muscles that control breathing. Those patients seldom snore. A third type is Complex Sleep Apnea which is a combination of obstructive and central sleep apnea. Dr. Proctor will do an evaluation, including a review of your medical and dental history, and review any previously performed sleep studies. If you need a sleep study done, he will guide you in getting a diagnosis from a certified sleep doctor.
If the results indicate sleep apnea, there are several treatment alternatives: CPAP, oral appliances, lifestyle changes or a combination of therapies. CPAP is a device that pumps a steady stream of air into the air passages to keep them open while you sleep. For patients intolerant to CPAP or unwilling to wear a CPAP, an oral appliance (a retainer-type device that keeps the tongue in place by holding the lower jaw forward while you sleep) might be recommended, combined with lifestyle changes like weight loss and exercise.