Sleep Apnoea & Snoring
If you snore or have a partner who snores, you know how disruptive it can be to getting the quality sleep you need for a productive day. Loud snoring can also indicate a serious condition called obstructive sleep apnoea, or OSA.
What is obstructive sleep apnoea?
Obstructive sleep apnoea occurs when the tissues at the back of the mouth and throat relax and block the airway as you sleep. A blocked airway can lead to disrupted breathing and lack of oxygen.
When the brain does not get enough oxygen for healthy function, it signals the body to awaken. This waking process can occur dozens or even hundreds of times per night. As you can imagine, this interrupted sleep is not restorative or restful.
Symptoms associated with OSA:
- Sore throat upon waking
- Snoring (often reported by partner)
- Unexplained weight gain
Diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnoea
Proper diagnosis of OSA relies on accurate reporting and analysis from an accredited sleep specialist. Typically, this involves a sleep study – either at home or in the sleep clinic.
You will then receive treatment recommendations based on the severity of your condition.
Seeking treatment for OSA
Following through with treatment is essential to your health as a number of conditions may be exacerbated or develop due to untreated OSA.
OSA causes a number of serious health-related issues.
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Erectile dysfunction
- Inability to concentrate
- Cardiac death
Treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea
In many cases, CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) therapy is the first line of treatment. An oxygen machine opens the airway with a continuous flow of air delivered through a facemask.
For some patients, however, CPAP treatment is problematic. Patients often have difficulty getting used to wearing the facemask and remove it during the night or opt not to wear it at all. This leaves OSA untreated and puts health at risk.
A CPAP machine can also make it difficult to travel. The sound it makes is often reported as disruptive.
We offer an alternative for mild to moderate OSA treatment using oral appliance therapy. Oral appliance therapy is an effective way to gently open the airway using a customised nightguard that gently guides the lower jaw forward. Some oral appliances are also designed to keep the tongue from drifting toward the back of the throat.
Most patients report that oral appliances are far more comfortable, convenient and easy to use.
These same oral appliances can treat snoring that is not related to OSA, providing a quiet night’s sleep for you and your partner.
Looking for a great night’s sleep?
Contact our Bondi Junction dental clinic to arrange a consultation with Dr Brendan Quill. We help many patients have the restful night’s sleep they need to feel their best.