Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update   Read More

Sleep Apnea is a Dangerous Disorder: Can Orthodontics Help?

  1. Home
  2. Dental Articles
  3. Orthodontics Articles
  4. Sleep Apnea is a Dangerous Disorder: Can Orthodontics Help?
  1. Home
  2. Dental Articles
  3. Orthodontics Articles
  4. Sleep Apnea is a Dangerous Disorder: Can Orthodontics Help?
Sleep-Apnea-is-a-Dangerous-Disorder-Can-Orthodontics-Help-Sunbury-Gisborne-Diggers-Rest-–-Sunbury-Dental-House

Has anyone ever told you that you snore? Do you suffer from chronic fatigue despite getting a full night of sleep? Do you feel excessive daytime sleepiness?

A good night’s sleep is one of the most important aspects of a healthy lifestyle. Not getting enough sleep, or not reaching the Rapid Eye Movement which stands for REM sleep, can have negative effects on your body, and can also affect your thinking, concentration, or mood. Being able to breathe properly while asleep helps ensure a night of full rest, but many people have some sort of trouble breathing while asleep, such as snoring. While snoring can be attributed to several different factors, such as obesity, allergies, congestion, or family medical history, it could also be a sign of a sleep disorder known as sleep apnea.

Your orthodontist could play an important role in helping you address your condition. Some people first learn about sleep breathing disorders when they see an orthodontist. Orthodontists and jaw surgeons often work closely with sleep doctors to run tests and diagnose sleep breathing disorders.

The Dangers of Sleep Apnea

Snoring can be comedic, but Sleep Apnea is no laughing matter with detrimental side effects. What makes sleep apnea so serious?

Sleep Apnea is connected with some life-threatening problems. For example, fatigue caused by sleep apnea leads to an increased risk of car crashes and work-related accidents. In the long term, Sleep apnea can lead to:

  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Heart disease (cardiovascular diseases)
  • Depression
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Complications while having general anaesthesia for surgery

It’s vital to recognise the signs of sleep apnea and get treatment. At the very minimum, breathing easily at night is a key to enjoying a healthy state of mind and all that flows from it.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder that has three different types. The most common type is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which is caused by the relaxing of muscles and soft tissue in the throat while sleeping that blocks the airway, or by abnormalities in the bone structure of the airways. Central sleep apnea (CSA) is caused by brain or nervous system issues related to the control of breathing. Mixed sleep apnea, aka complex sleep apnea, is a combination of the two and is generally more serious.

Symptoms of sleep apnea include:

  • Loud or frequent snoring
  • Pauses in breathing while asleep
  • Choking or gasping for breath while asleep
  • Insomnia (trouble falling asleep or frequently waking up)
  • Tiredness or lack of energy during the day
  • Irritability or mood swings
Sleep-Apnea-is-a-Dangerous-Disorder-Can-Orthodontics-Help-Sunbury-Gisborne-Diggers-Rest-Sunbury-Dental-House

Can Your Dentist or Orthodontist Help You?

Some orthodontists and dentists are trained to recognise the ways OSA can affect their patients. Although an orthodontist will not diagnose you with sleep apnea, they will examine your mouth and let you know if they notice any potential signs of OSA.

Treatment of OSA is more than just getting braces or jaw surgery. If necessary, an orthodontist will refer you to a sleep doctor who is qualified to give you a definitive diagnosis. This is usually done in a controlled sleep study setting measuring apneic events at a sleep centre. Orthodontists, oral surgeons for surgical treatment, and sleep physicians often collaborate on sleep abnormalities.

Even if an orthodontist does not diagnose OSA, what about orthodontic treatment? Can braces or clear aligners help if you have obstructive sleep apnea?

Patients on oral appliance therapy for OSA often experience changes in dental arches hence moving from medicine to the dentistry side for potential dentofacial remedies. Treatment options to address dental changes formed as a function of oral appliances are diverse. Dental sleep medicine has expanded in recent years.

Final Thought

Remember that your dentist or orthodontist can screen you for sleep apnea, so if you’re having symptoms such as daytime fatigue, headaches, snoring, or a dry mouth, don’t hesitate to follow up with your oral healthcare professional.

Note: All content and media on the  Sunbury Dental House website and social media channels are created and published online for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice.

Services Mentioned

Related Articles

Is There A Link Between Gum Disease And Mental Health?

Is There A Link Between Gum Disease And Mental Health?

Integration. The act or process of uniting different things. We live in a world that likes nothing better than to integrate: people, governance, business, money, medicine, agriculture, science, technology, food supply chains… it seems that somehow, we just can’t get...

read more
Six-Monthly Dental Visits: Tooth Truth Or An Accepted Lie?

Six-Monthly Dental Visits: Tooth Truth Or An Accepted Lie?

Ah, Finland. Land of the heavy metal band, kaboom country of the first molotov cocktail, and nation of kalsarikannit (staying in, drinking beer in your underwear with no intention of going out). The average Finn drinks their way through more than 12kg of coffee a...

read more

Flossing Guidelines: Should They Be Dropped?

Is it better to have flossed and lost than never to have flossed at all? Alfred Lord Tennyson had spent fifteen or twenty minutes a day strangling both distal interphalangeal joints with horsetail hair In Memoriam A.H.H. would have never been written. Certainly not...

read more

Great dental practice! Fong is a very experienced dentist acquiring all my dental needs and the nurse Emily helped my dentist experience a comfortable one. Highly recommend them.

Michael D.

Ready to get started?

Just fill in this form and we will be in touch

  • Treatment:

  • Preferred Date:

  • DD slash MM slash YYYY
  • Preferred Time:

  • :

Great dental practice! Fong is a very experienced dentist acquiring all my dental needs and the nurse Emily helped my dentist experience a comfortable one. Highly recommend them.

Michael D.

After hearing numerous excellent reports about this clinic, I decided to visit myself. I must say that it was a fantastic experience, even better than I expected! The clinic is bright and modern, the receptionists and nurses are friendly and help to put you at ease. The dentist is gentle, knowledgeable and explains everything so thoroughly!

I highly recommend this clinic!
 

Rebecca S.

Download Free Price List

Please enter your email so we can send you the price list in the next few minutes

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Achieving the Smile You Love Webinar

Thinking of upgrading your smile but not sure what to expect? Watch this webinar as Dr Antonoff takes you through 3 patients’ smiles he transformed right here in Melbourne

You have Successfully Subscribed!