Sleep Apnea Treatment in Chesapeake, VA

Does your partner complain about your loud snoring?

The American Sleep Apnea Association estimates that about 90 million people snore. About half experience what we call simple snoring, but others may have a severe sleep-related breathing disorder called obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA. 

At Bennett A.Thomas, DDS and Associates, we know how disruptive OSA can be and how it takes a toll on your sleep, your relationship, and your general health. But in some cases, our dentists may be able to treat your sleep apnea at our Great Bridge, Chesapeake dental office by customizing an FDA-approved customized oral appliance.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

During sleep, the muscles in your tongue, jaw, and throat relax. This movement causes your tongue to fall backward, which blocks your airway and prevents oxygen from moving freely from the nose and mouth to the lungs.

The result is that you stop breathing, and your body has to wake itself up to restart breathing and restore oxygen levels. For some patients, this activity occurs hundreds of times a night which leads to exhaustion.

There are varying degrees of sleep apnea, and some are severe enough that patients need to wear a CPAP mask. But if you have mild to moderate symptoms or can’t tolerate wearing your CPAP, a simple oral device customized for you may be enough to eliminate your symptoms and allow you to sleep peacefully again.

How Can I Tell If I Have Sleep Apnea?

The most common symptoms of sleep apnea are often first noticed by your sleeping partner. Some of the most common signs are excessively loud snoring, frequent pauses in breathing, choking, and loud snorting sounds during sleep.

Other common symptoms of sleep apnea you may experience are:

  • Daytime fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Drowsy driving accidents

Does Sleep Apnea Impact My General Health?

Studies show that restful sleep is essential for your mental and physical health. If chronic snoring or sleep apnea goes untreated, you are at a greater risk for:

  • Heart failure
  • High blood pressure
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Stroke
  • Headaches

How Do You Treat Sleep Apnea?

If you suspect you have sleep apnea, the first step is to call Bennett A. Thomas, DDS and Associates. We work with sleep specialists in our area who will arrange a sleep study to determine the severity of the problem.

The study monitors your oxygen levels and blood pressure and records sleep apnea episodes. Your sleep doctor will review the results with our dentists and determine if the oral appliance will safely provide the relief you need. 

For sleep apnea patients with mild to moderate OSA, The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) has approved a customized oral device as a first-line treatment. The appliance moves your lower jaw slightly forward, which opens your airway so that you can breathe normally through the night.

At our Great Bridge, Chesapeake dental office, we offer several brands of these appliances: 

  • Panthera Sleep Appliance
  • Silent Nite SL
  • DreamTAP
  • EMA
  • TAP 3TL
  • Narval CC

These devices vary in design and function, but they all work by keeping your airway open and unobstructed during sleep. Our dentists will work with your sleep physician to decide which type is right for you.

Please Call for a Sleep Apnea Consultation

If your partner complains about your loud snoring, or you experience any of the above symptoms, please call our Great Bridge, Chesapeake dental office to learn more about sleep apnea treatment. We’ll find the solution that will protect your health and allow you to finally get the restful sleep you need.