Sleep apnea isn’t something that should be ignored. This sleep disorder can lead to long-term negative consequences for someone’s health, and that’s not something to mess around with! Depending on the severity of the sleep apnea, there are different ways for it to be treated. Here are some of the most common:
If sleep apnea is quite mild, then your doctor may want to try lifestyle changes first before moving to more involved therapies. For example, they may ask you to lose weight to get down to a healthier number or they may ask to cut out alcohol or tobacco. Being overweight, drinking alcohol, and smoking tobacco can all cause sleep apnea.
Another treatment option is an oral appliance. This is a good option for patients who have mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. The way it works is that you wear a mouthpiece that repositions your jaw to keep your airway open. This oral appliance will be designed specifically for you and is a convenient option because of how easy it is to wear and carry around.
CPAP therapy is likely the sleep apnea treatment method you’ve heard of the most often. With this type of treatment, you wear a mask while you sleep, which ensures a continuous air pressure to keep your airway open. While this is a very common and reliable method for treating sleep apnea, some patients find it difficult to stick with because of the nature of wearing the mask and how big the machine is.
For some people, surgery might be the best option for handling their sleep apnea. This is determined on a case by case basis and may be better for those with severe sleep apnea. During a surgery like this, tissue may be removed from the palate and tonsils to open the airway.
If you have sleep apnea and would like to discuss your treatment options, come into Caring Smiles for an in-office consultation with our knowledgeable team. We provide sleep apnea treatment with custom-made oral appliances, so we’d be happy to discuss this option to see if it’s the right choice for you.