Can Sleep Apnea Be Cured or Only Managed?

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Sleep apnea can be a difficult and lengthy process to treat and not all forms can be cured by intervention. With comprehensive support from your dentist in Windermere, there is hope that you may overcome the negative effects of sleep apnea and regain your quality of life.

What is sleep apnea and how common is it in Edmonton?

Sleep apnea is a disorder that impacts your breathing while at rest. Those suffering with sleep apnea may experience significantly reduced oxygen levels throughout the night due to repeated extended pauses in breathing. At our dental clinic in Edmonton, we regularly treat this disorder – millions of Canadians are at risk of developing sleep apnea.  Your Windermere dentist will ask you a number of questions about your symptoms, so it can help to have a journal of your symptoms and sleep quality available. Document body pain, headaches, irritability, frequency of illness and anything else that you think may be relevant to your treatment at your dental clinic in Windermere.

If you are suffering from sleep apnea and someone else has observed you sleeping, they may remark about aggressive snoring. Snoring is an indication of obstructive sleep apnea because it indicates that an excess of tissue is collapsing over the airway and letting air pass through by flapping as we snore. Often, our patients are alerted to the problem by their partner or family member and start seeking out snoring treatment in Edmonton.

Central sleep apnea is not concerned with tissue, rather, this kind of sleep apnea refers to a disconnect between the brain and body. When the right impulses are not triggered, the muscles we need to breathe will not engage. In this case, it is common to hear of waking in a gasp – though many patients aren’t aware since they are low in oxygen and still in a sleep-like state when it occurs. This causes exhaustion over the long term which typically leads to patients seeking help from their doctor or dentist in southside Edmonton.

How is sleep apnea diagnosed and treated in Edmonton?

Even the best dental clinic and the best dentist in Edmonton may not offer sleep apnea or snoring treatment, so it’s important to check with your dental clinic prior to booking your sleep consultation. At Viva Dental Wellness, we offer sleep studies and treatment of sleep apnea in Edmonton to a varied clientele. If your family dentist in Edmonton is unable to assess your sleep concerns, we are happy to see you to treat this upsetting condition.     

Those patients with sleep apnea typically describe symptoms of feeling chronically exhausted, waking with a headache and dry mouth, loss of ability to concentrate and irritability that is impacting the quality of their relationships. Over a long enough period of time, sleep apnea can become a serious health concern.

Sleep apnea treatment begins with a sleep study to determine the quality of sleep that is occurring and the duration of each sleep cycle. Most dentists in southside Edmonton provide an at-home sleep test to begin with. Eventually, your Edmonton dentist will recommend treatment which may include an oral appliance or a Continuous Positive Air Pressure (CPAP) machine which will encourage your airway to remain open and your breathing rhythms to stay consistent.

What are the risk factors of untreated sleep apnea?     

As a dentist in south Edmonton treating obstructive sleep apnea, we can confirm that this condition impacts males primarily, as well as those with thicker neck circumference. Those patients carrying excess body fat will be at further risk of obstructive apnea due to fat deposits around the throat compressing the airway when sleeping on their backs. Blood pressure problems and type 2 diabetes have been shown to correlate with the risk of obstructive apnea. Note that children with very narrow airways may also be affected.

Risk factors for central sleep apnea include previous incidence of stroke, a diagnosis of congestive heart failure, and the use of strong opiates like methadone.

Are there any lifestyle changes that can help manage sleep apnea?

Patients carrying excess body weight may see significant improvement in their obstructive sleep apnea by reducing their body mass index in order to ease the pressure on their airway. If you are taking prescribed medications, like opioids that have a significant sedative effect, your doctor may slowly reduce the amount of medication prescribed in order to reduce their impact on sleep quality.

How can I find a sleep apnea specialist in Edmonton?               

If you’re looking for a dentist/sleep specialist in Edmonton but you are limited to short commutes, we recommend searching Google for “dental clinic near me”, “dental office near me” or “sleep apnea treatment near me”. Call the clinic of your choice to understand the process involved and when you can begin to access treatment.

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