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Sleep Apnea Treatment Options

Sleep Apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep.

Each episode, called an apnea or hypopnea, lasts long enough so one or more breaths are missed, and such episodes occur repeatedly throughout sleep. In Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), breathing is interrupted by a physical block to airflow despite respiratory effort. Rarely are OSA sufferers even aware of their condition and most simply become conditioned to the daytime sleepiness and fatigue associated with significant levels of sleep disturbance.

Spouses are often the person aware of a loved one’s snoring. We have also observed spouses can accommodate to the snoring bed partner and are not aware of the underlying problem. We have a bed partner questionnaire to help you and us determine if a sleep study may be indicated.

For those who are aware of their condition, the gold standard for treating OSA has long been an oral appliance called the CPAP machine. Although very effective, many people find the CPAP to be very uncomfortable and cumbersome. In fact, it is well known after one year 67% of CPAP users are no longer use the machine, which is why some could search for other devices or models online at CPAP Australia or similar. In many cases, sleep apnea sufferers may benefit from and prefer a more comfortable jaw-aligning oral appliance. The purpose of this device is to reposition the tongue forward and out of the throat to allow for a clear airway. Delivering more oxygen to the body allows you to wake up feeling more rested and energetic.

How Do I Determine If I Have a Problem?

The standard sleep study is done in a sleep lab or center, a technician is watching you sleep. The team at Incredible Smiles together with a sleep physician can help you understand the results of your physician reviewed study. We offer our guests a method of doing a sleep study in the comfort of their own home. By taking home a monitor you are able to receive a report on the severity of your OSA and the results are back within 48 hours. This home device is a screening tool and not meant to replace a formal sleep study. A sleep physician will review your report to make recommendations for treatments such as an oral appliance (made by a dentist) or CPAP. Only with a sleep physician’s recommendation will we recommend an oral appliance.

The Home Sleep Study

The team at Incredible Smiles has tried several home sleep devices and we like the Ares from Watermarkmedical.com. This device is worn on the forehead. There are no leads or wires running from the fingers. This arrangement allows for ease of use especially when bathroom breaks are needed during the night.

What Will The Report Tell Me?

The report will give you the following information:

  • Number of hours spent sleeping
  • Number of times you woke up
  • The decibel level of your snoring
  • Your body positioning and how that relates to snoring
  • Your oxygen saturation level
  • Your average pulse rate
  • The amount of REM vs. non-REM sleep
  • The number of apnic and hypopnic events

Schedule a consultation to find out if this comfortable alternative to CPAP is right for you.

Sleep Apnea FAQs

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