“I’ve had obstructive sleep apnea for a little over twenty years. In the middle of a conversation, I’d just doze off, sound asleep.” David’s family would tease that they couldn’t take him anywhere – in a restaurant, at a sporting event, it didn’t matter – he’d fall asleep! “I wasn’t able to hold down a job. I wasn’t able to get anything done let alone function. My emotional state was so deteriorated, my wife and I even went for marriage counseling.”
David went for a sleep study, which found that his sleep was interrupted by Obstructive Sleep Apnea 116 times per hour. As a result, he was given a CPAP machine, but the constant adjustments with little result frustrated him. “The machine turned into a hat rack,” he says.
When a person with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) falls asleep, the tongue relaxes along with the throat. These relaxed tissues vibrate as air passes, making a snoring sound. If allowed to continue, the repetitive vibration will cause the airway to swell, further obstructing an already narrow opening. Often, breathing will stop for a number of seconds, causing blood pressure to rise, and interrupting sleep.
In a recent press release, The American Heart Association stated, “Sleep apnea isn’t just snoring. Left untreated, this can lead to serious cardiovascular problems.” Some things in life, like daytime drowsiness and sleep apnea, ought to be skipped – and they can be!
“My pulmonologist strongly suggested that I go to a local dentist who was trained to administer an oral appliance. He didn’t mince any words. He said, ‘You have to do something, or you’re going to die,’ so we went to the dentist he recommended,” says David.
A solution for OSA – and the health problems that can accompany it – can be simple in most cases. A small oral appliance, fitted by a trained dentist, is a painless and convenient solution to OSA. This oral mouth guard is similar to a sports mouth appliance, and is completely non-invasive. It works by repositioning and stabilizing the lower jaw and tongue to prevent the soft tissue from relaxing into the airway.
Dr. Reed, a dentist trained to administer oral appliances, works closely with medical professionals who diagnose sleep-disordered breathing. The dental device is a painless and convenient solution to OSA, which works by repositioning and stabilizing the lower jaw and tongue. In most cases, this prevents the soft tissue in the airway from relaxing. The treatment is reversible and works in conjunction with other OSA therapies, if need be.
Dr. Reed and his staff are committed to successful treatment. Progress is monitored carefully as each patient has a different airway, and requires slight modifications to fit the patient’s bone and teeth structure. In David’s experience, adjustment to the device was easy. “There was no learning curve -you just put it in your mouth and go to sleep!”
“The sleep appliance has literally saved my life – and it’s saved my marriage. My life has started to come back again. I’ve started to be the person my wife met and married years ago.”