While snoring maybe something we laugh about in the movies or on TV, in real life it can literally be life threatening. For some people, snoring can develop into Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), a condition in which moments are experienced during sleep when breathing completely stops. When you consider that this may happen more than 50 times an hour during sleep, you can clearly see how destructive this can be to overall health. In fact, the risks of undiagnosed OSA include heart attacks, strokes, impotence, irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, and heart disease. On a positive note, there are treatment options that can help. In addition to exercising and losing weight if you are over the normal range, there is more that can be done quite simply.
Did you know that a dentist trained in sleep disorders can play a key role in your treatment? One way is by making an oral appliance, a custom device that is similar to a retainer or sports mouthpiece, that is worn during sleep. To learn more about sleep apnea and your treatment options, discuss them with your dentist during your next routine exam.