Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Dallas / Fort Worth, TX
At Beyond Dental and Implant Center, our dentists are prepared to help you with any issue that might affect your dental health. Obstructive sleep apnea, or a unique difficulty staying asleep, is one of many problems that could have surprisingly negative effects on your mouth. Many studies have demonstrated that obstructive sleep apnea can often result in weaker teeth and a drier mouth. If you think you may have this disorder, we can provide you the expertise you need to get the best oral appliance therapy and, if need be, oral surgery. Through these approaches and the use of a mouthguard or nightguard, we can help you continue to have positive dental health as time goes on.
How Do I Know If I Have Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
For those who sleep solo, it can at first be rather difficult to find out if you have obstructive sleep apnea. This is because the most obvious symptom is loud snoring, which you may not be able to determine for yourself without a sleep partner who can tell you about it. Another sign is waking up with a headache because your disjointed breathing pattern can result in less and less oxygen reaching your brain.
Less oxygen to the brain leads directly to hypertension and increased blood pressure. If you are overweight, these symptoms can be exacerbated by extra tissues around your throat and neck. Lastly, nocturnal teeth grinding can arise from sleep apnea, which should be countered by the use of a mouthguard or nightguard.
What Does Obstructive Sleep Apnea Do?
What obstructive sleep apnea does to you is stop your breathing repeatedly as you try to sleep throughout the night. Each pause can last for up to ten seconds at a time. This unnatural breathing and interruption can often lead to loud snoring, sleep fragmentation, and gasping. On top of these inconveniences, obstructive sleep apnea can cause you to sleep with your mouth open, which leads to many negative consequences on your oral health. Your mouth will frequently become dry throughout the night and have less saliva present, which allows for increased tooth decay and more germs in your mouth.
Issues such as these are mitigated through the use of oral appliance therapy and possibly the inclusion of a nightguard or mouthguard in your nightly routine.
Long Term Effects Of Sleep Apnea
Because your breathing with obstructive sleep apnea is irregular, you can begin to suffer from episodic hypoxia, which can cause cellular damage to your brain over time. Scientists have discovered that changes in the brain occur with patients and laboratory animals who suffer from obstructive sleep apnea. These changes are accompanied by negative effects on memory functions and learning.
Your dental health can continue to be impacted, as hypoxia makes it easier for plaque to attach to your cellular walls. Because obstructive sleep apnea can lead to so many problems, we recommend attending to it speedily with oral surgery and oral appliance therapy as instructed by our dentists.
Though obstructive sleep apnea and many other respiratory conditions can have nasty effects on your dental health, we at Beyond Dental and Implant Center are fully prepared to help you get the oral surgery, mouthguard, nightguard, and whatever else you need to overcome it. If you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea and want to learn more about this disorder, call us today at (972) 591-7520.