Sleep Apnea and Snoring

sleep apnea

Sleep apnea and snoring can be troublesome issues for both you and your bedmate. And the effects of such interrupted sleep can lead to fuzzy concentration, irritability, and fatigue. If snoring or sleep apnea is interfering with your good night’s sleep, consider using a mouthguard.

What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition during which your breathing stops and starts during your slumber. It can be caused by muscles in your throat relaxing and closing your airway, or by transmissions from your brain failing to tell you to breathe. Some risk factors for sleep apnea include excess weight, a narrow airway, gender, age, family history, use of sedatives, alcohol, smoking, and heart disorders.

How do I remedy sleep apnea or snoring?
We can help you restore your full night’s rest by providing you with a custom-fit sleep apnea mouthguard. This device is easy to use and can greatly reduce your snoring and sleep apnea symptoms. When you first use your mouthguard, you may experience gagging, drooling, muscle soreness, and feeling as though your mouthguard is too tight, but don’t worry, these symptoms will soon subside. Although mouthguards may feel awkward at first, the discomfort will pass after the first few weeks, and you will find using one becomes second nature. In fact, most patients report little to no discomfort within just a few weeks of using it.

How do I care for my mouthguard?
We will schedule routine mouth guard adjustments over your first 3-4 months to ensure a proper fit. In the meantime, the day-to-day care of your device is a quick and easy process. Simply scrub every surface of your mouthguard each morning with a toothbrush and toothpaste, or use a product specifically formulated to clean oral appliances, such as DentaSOAK®. Make sure to always keep your mouthguard clean and dry. We also recommend keeping it away from pets and children – you don’t want it to become the next slobber-filled toy. We advise that you also avoid storing your mouthguard in hot cars or in your luggage when flying.

What potential issues should I be aware of?
Sometimes mouth guards can cause soft tissue irritation and minor tooth crowding, or they can dislodge ill-fitting fillings and crowns. In addition, a small number of patients experience a worsening of symptoms after using their device. If you find that your mouthguard is causing significant pain or irritation that lasts more than a couple of hours, or your sleep apnea or snoring symptoms increase, call the office to schedule a re-evaluation visit. We want to make sure your mouthguard is working properly and that you are completely satisfied.

If you have any questions about your sleep apnea mouth guard, just give us a call! Schedule your appointment with Perkins Dental Care by calling (225) 398-3282.

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