Do you snore? The best way to know is to ask your partner. Snoring isn’t something to ignore as it can mean your brain is not getting the oxygen levels it needs on a consistent basis. If you or your partner snores, there are solutions that can help you. The benefits of getting help, including using a simple oral appliance, can be well-worth the short appointment to learn about your options.
The National Sleep Foundation reports that 90 million American adults snore, and about 37 million Americans snore every night. Snoring occurs when the tongue and tissues in the throat relax during sleep. When the tissues in this area relax like this, it can cause limitations on the amount of air that is able to pass through to the lungs. The sound you hear is brought on by the vibration of these tissues, especially in the nasal area and the throat. Most often, repositioning can help reduce some of these risks.
When is snoring a real problem?
Most of the time, snoring isn’t a health risk. However, it will always impact the quality of sleep you get and that of your partner. Snoring can become problematic if there are gaps in your breathing, though. Your partner is sure to be able to notice this. When snoring, do you stop breathing for short amounts of time? This may seem like a short pause in the snoring. When this happens, it means your brain is not getting oxygen in those seconds.
During these moments, the upper airway is blocked. This happens over and over throughout the hour. This is due to either the brain not sending signals to the lungs to breathe or, in more common situations, tissues are obstructing the breathing process.
The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute states that these episodes of non-breathing indicate sleep apnea. This condition, if not properly treated to stop the snoring from occurring, can cause damage to the brain, heart and cognitive health of a person. It can also cause a lack of oxygen that can lead to serious complications such as glaucoma, heart attacks, diabetes, cancer and behavioral disorders.
How an oral appliance can help
The best way to reduce these risks, then, is to stop the snoring from occurring. This can help you sleep better. It helps your partner sleep better. More importantly, it also helps reduce the risk of sleep apnea and its related complications.
An oral appliance is perhaps the easiest solution. If you or your loved one snores significantly, schedule an appointment with your dental care team to talk about what is happening. After an examination, they can make recommendations about improving your snoring.
An oral appliance works by opening up the mouth and holding the tissues in the airway open. These are always custom fitted to ensure they feel comfortable and work properly for you. The device is much like a mouth guard or a retainer that you may have worn during sports.
Individuals can easily put the device into their mouth before going to bed. They sleep with it in place, soundly. Then, in the morning they can remove it.
For some people, an oral appliance is not the only option or the best option. In some situations, a CPAP machine is necessary. This creates a constant flow of air pressure into the airway to keep the tissues open. For those who have sleep apnea, this may be one of the best ways to reduce the risks to your health.
Is it time to learn more about your snoring?
It’s always important to address snoring, even if you’ve suffered with it for a long time. Treatment options can improve your quality of life while also helping to ensure your partner is getting the sleep they need. Schedule an appointment with A Beautiful Smile Dentistry to learn more about oral appliances. Contact us now for an appointment or book your appointment online now.