Types of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a serious disorder that is characterized by the cessation of breath during sleep. When this happens, you may make choking noises or snore loudly. Your body and brain may also become oxygen deprived, causing you to wake up. This can happen a few times a night or many times a night, although many patients usually do not remember it. A sleep partner is typically the first person to notice signs of sleep apnea. Before we can treat your sleep apnea at David R. Moyer Cosmetic & Family Dentistry, we must determine whether it is obstructive, central, or complex sleep apnea syndrome.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)
Obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is the most common form of the sleep disorder. A blockage causes OSA in the airway due to the relaxation of muscles in the back of the throat. When relaxed, the tongue can fall backward, and the throat can narrow. The walls of the throat will vibrate, which causes the loud snoring sounds.
Risk factors for OSA
There are several treatment options we may recommend to correct your obstructive sleep apnea. For instance, an oral appliance similar to a mouthguard can keep your lower jaw in the proper resting position during sleep. This will enable the airway to remain open. We may also recommend positional therapy, weight loss, or a nasal decongestant. For severe cases, surgical intervention may be necessary.
Central Sleep Apnea
Central sleep apnea is not caused by a blocked airway. Instead, the brain fails to send the signals to the muscles that control your breathing. This is the result of an instability in the respiratory control center.
Central sleep apnea can be caused by some conditions that affect the brainstem. You should schedule an appointment if you have shortness of breath that consistently wakes you up if you have difficulty staying asleep, if you have excessive daytime drowsiness, and if you have intermittent pauses in your breath during sleep.
The main treatment for central sleep apnea is a CPAP machine. CPAP, or continuous positive airway pressure, involves wearing a mask over your nose while you sleep. The mask attaches to the tiny pump that supplies a continuous amount of pressurized air. This air will help hold your upper airway open. In certain circumstances, we may also address associated medical problems or a reduction of opioid medications.
Complex Sleep Apnea
Complex sleep apnea is a term used to describe a form of the disorder that involve both obstructive and central sleep apnea symptoms. Treatment for complex sleep apnea may vary depending on your symptoms. Only Dr. Moyer will be able to determine which form of the disorder is affecting your sleep.
Questions About Sleep Apnea?
To learn more about sleep apnea call us today at 480.935.6295, and schedule your sleep apnea consultation today.