Orthodontics for Sleep Apnea

In 2017, the ADA recommended that dentists screen patients for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) and Sleep Disordered Breathing (SDB). We agree with that recommendation so don't be surprised if we are the first to make you aware of this this oft ignored medical problem that out ranks diabetes and asthma in terms of its prevelance.

When undiagnosed and unrecognized in children OSA or SDB can lead to difficulties concentrating and learning. These behavior problems are often misdiagnosed as ADHD. Improving a child's sleep can drastically change their life and life trajectory. There are countless stories of thankful parents grateful for the florishment of their child once that child is able to obtain truly restful sleep. All it took was recognizing the problem and directing solutions towards improving their health.

When OSA is undiagnosed in adults, OSA increases risk for stroke, heart attacks, depression and auto accidents from daytime sleepiness. Eliminating deaths that result from these issues should be every healthcare providers goal. We are proud to be a part of that.

Your assessment starts with a few simple and quick questions to find out more about you or your child's sleep habits.

  1. Answer this - questionaire
  2. Think about your sleep quality: do you feel refreshed? did you dream? do you have to get up frequently to go to the bathroom? does your bed partner wake you up if snoring? do you experience daytime sleepiness? do you grind your teeth at night?
  3. We will evaluate your nasal and throat and jaw anatomy to see if you are at risk for sleep apnea issues.

Things that can promote better sleep hygiene:

Turn off that screen! The average person spends way too much time in front of devices. The flicker of the screen can artificially stimulate your brain preventing you from getting a good nights rest Be comfortable Set your room to a comfortable temperature. Air Filters can help clear the air in your bed room of dust and pollens that may trigger allergies causing stuffy noses and result in mouth breathing. Mouth breathing can lead to increased tooth decay and inflamed tonsils and adenoids. Inflamed tonsils and adenoids can contribute to OSA or snoring Be consistent Go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time on weekdays and weekends Be Active Being active with exercise can help you feel tired enough to go to bed Don't eat too much or drink too much caffine or alcohol Caffine may keep you awake later than you like, Alcohol interferes with your ability to sleep deeply.

Your orthodontic treatment will be designed specifically for your skeletal and growth needs with the goal of reducing your risk for obstructive sleep apnea. In most cases it involves making enough room in your mouth for your tongue, establishing good lip and tongue tone, and working on the functional range of motion for your tongue as well as assessing your sense of improved sleep quality. We look forward to being your partner in not only straight teeth, but also a healthier life overall!