Sleep Apnea
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What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a disorder in which a person's breathing is repeatedly interrupted during sleep. The most common form of sleep apnea is obstructive sleep apnea, which occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep the airway open, despite the effort to breathe. This can cause the person to wake up frequently during the night and can lead to poor sleep quality and daytime fatigue. Other types of sleep apnea include central sleep apnea, which occurs when the brain fails to send the proper signals to the muscles that control breathing, and complex sleep apnea syndrome, which is a combination of the other two types.

Treatment for Sleep Apnea: Mandibular Advancement Devices

Dentists play a key role in the treatment of sleep apnea by providing oral appliances, which are specially designed devices worn in the mouth during sleep to help keep the airway open. These appliances work by repositioning the lower jaw, tongue, and soft tissues of the mouth and throat to prevent the collapse of the airway.

One of the most common types of oral appliance used to treat sleep apnea is a mandibular advancement device (MAD), which is a plastic device that fits over the upper and lower teeth and holds the lower jaw forward while sleeping. This helps to keep the airway open by preventing the tongue and soft tissues in the back of the throat from collapsing and blocking the airway.

Why Mandibular Advancement Devices are one of the best treatments for sleep apnea?

Mandibular advancement devices (MADs) are considered to be one of the most effective non-surgical treatments for obstructive sleep apnea. They work by repositioning the lower jaw and tongue, which helps to keep the airway open during sleep. Dr Kaur builds and custom fits mandibular advancement devices for her patients who are seeking sleep apnea treatment. 

There are several reasons why MADs are considered to be a good treatment option for sleep apnea:

  • MADs are custom-fitted to the patient’s mouth, ensuring a comfortable and secure fit.
  • They are portable and easy to use, which makes them a good option for people who travel frequently.
  • MADs can be adjusted to fit the patient’s specific needs and can be adjusted as the patient’s condition changes.
  • They are relatively non-invasive and do not require the use of a mask or machine, which can make them more appealing to some patients.
  • MADs have been found to be effective in reducing the severity of sleep apnea in many patients, and in some cases, can eliminate it completely.
  • They can improve quality of life and overall health by reducing symptoms such as snoring, daytime fatigue and improve cardiovascular health.

It’s important to note that MADs are not the best solution for everyone.

Common Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

  • Loud snoring, which may be accompanied by choking or gasping sounds
  • Pauses in breathing during sleep, which can last for several seconds to minutes
  • Excessive daytime fatigue or feeling very sleepy during the day, even after a full night’s sleep
  • Difficulty staying asleep or insomnia
  • Morning headaches
  • Difficulty paying attention or staying awake during the day
  • Irritability, depression or mood changes
  • Chest pain at night
  • Dry mouth or sore throat upon waking
  • Night sweats
  • Reduced libido
  • Difficulty with memory or concentration

It’s important to note that not everyone with sleep apnea will experience all of these symptoms, and some people may have the condition without experiencing any noticeable symptoms. If you think you may have sleep apnea, it is important to consult a healthcare professional.

Frequently Asked Questions about Sleep Apnea

Q: What causes sleep apnea?

A: Sleep apnea is caused by a partial or complete blockage of the airway during sleep. This can be due to a variety of factors, including obesity, a large neck size, a large tongue, a small jaw, or a deviated septum.

Q: How is sleep apnea diagnosed?

A: Sleep apnea is typically diagnosed through a sleep study, which is conducted at home using a portable monitoring device. The sleep study will measure a person’s brain activity, eye movement, muscle activity, and breathing patterns during sleep to determine whether they have sleep apnea and how severe it is..

Q: Can sleep apnea be cured?

A: Sleep apnea is a chronic condition that cannot be cured, but it can be managed with appropriate treatment. The goal of treatment is to reduce the number of apneas (pauses in breathing) and hypopneas (shallow breathing) that occur during sleep, which can improve sleep quality and reduce symptoms.

Q: Does sleep apnea increase the risk of other health problems?

A: Yes, sleep apnea is associated with an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, depression and anxiety, cognitive impairment, and accidents. It’s important to be treated as soon as possible to reduce the risk of these health problems.


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563 Epsilon Dr, Pittsburgh, PA 15238

Tel: (412) 406-8100

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