Dentist can build a mouth guard to fit your teeth and prevent snoring, in a comfortable way.If you or a loved one struggles with snoring while asleep, you might be surprised to know that dental treatment can help. While people may snore from time to time, loud, excessive snoring can be the sign of a…
Sleep Apnea: Tips on Where To Go for Help
Unexplained fatigue, loud snoring, dry mouth, and morning headaches are all classic signs of sleep apnea. These symptoms should be taken very seriously, especially among those who fit any of these characteristics:
- Overweight or obese
- Older in age
- Living with a preexisting medical condition
- Known to have a family history of sleep apnea
When left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to a host of medical complications, including an increased risk for serious disease and even death. Fortunately, there are several resources and options available to patients who suffer from this condition.
Medical and dental care for sleep apnea
Those with persistent symptoms should seek prompt evaluation by a medical professional. A group of doctors and dentists may work together as a team to provide more complete treatment for affected patients.
For most people, treating sleep apnea begins with a visit to a primary care physician or dentist for evaluation. These caregivers can discuss symptoms and perform examinations to check for obvious physical conditions that cause this type of sleep disorder. For some people, the soft tissues of the mouth and throat block the airway while relaxing during sleep. Some obstructions can be corrected with oral appliances to reposition the jaw at night.
In most cases, a dentist or doctor will order a sleep study to confirm an assumed sleep apnea diagnosis. While some patients visit a sleep center for this process, others may receive a kit for testing at home. The results can help a medical team learn more about the causes and severity of the condition.
After a complete diagnosis, a team of professionals may work together to help treat this sleep disorder. Some patients may be referred to an ENT, a neurologist, or a surgeon, depending on the underlying cause.
Other resources for patients
In addition to dental and medical professionals, those with sleep apnea can find help and support from various sources. Supplementing professional care with a holistic approach can help alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life.
Articles and websites
Online research can provide a number of helpful tips, from caring for CPAP machines to recognizing important warning signs. Individuals should be wary of sites that are not certified or endorsed by a professional or government organization. Browsing the Center for Disease Control's website for reputable sources can be a good place to start.
Mental health professionals
The effects of sleep apnea can take their toll on physical, mental, and emotional health. Those who live with this condition are at risk for developing anxiety and depression. Talking with a therapist can help patients cope with these struggles.
Nutritionists and fitness trainers
For many people, weight loss is an effective way to combat sleep apnea. Meeting with a professional fitness instructor or dietician can help patients lose excess weight while boosting the lower energy levels caused by sleep apnea.
It is critical for people with sleep apnea symptoms to see a medical or dental professional for diagnosis and treatment. In addition, researching the topic, reaching out for support, and making positive lifestyle changes can help improve symptoms for a healthier life.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Do I Have Sleep Apnea in Forest Hills, NY.
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