Every day, around 20 million Americans wake up feeling exhausted due to sleep apnea, the second most common sleep disorder in the U.S. (right behind insomnia). Sleep apnea can rob people of their nightly rest and their overall health if left untreated, but thankfully for local families, it’s now easier than ever to get help for sleep apnea in Oklahoma City. Your dentist at Grand Dental Studio, Dr. Michael Kirk, is specially trained to provide a custom-made and effective treatment so sleep apnea sufferers can finally rest easy.
But First, What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a disorder where a person briefly and frequently stops breathing during the night. This is most often caused by the soft tissues in the mouth and throat relaxing into and blocking the airway. When this occurs, the body panics and partially wakes up in order to restore normal breathing. This can happen up to 100 times an hour for some patients.
These constant interruptions prevent a person from getting the deep, restful sleep they need to stay awake and alert during the day, and they can also bring on a variety of other potentially harmful symptoms.
The Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
- Loud, chronic snoring
- Frequent and persistent exhaustion despite getting 7-9 hours of sleep
- Waking up in the middle of the night gasping or out of breath
- Mood swings/depression
- Morning headaches/sore throats
- Memory problems
- Trouble losing/keeping off weight
- Sexual dysfunction
According to research conducted by the American Sleep Apnea Association, nearly 38,000 annual cardiovascular deaths in the U.S. can be directly linked to complications due to sleep apnea.
How Your Dentist Can Help
So how does a dentist in Oklahoma City help with a sleep disorder? This is a fair question, and one that Dr. Kirk is ready to answer.
Sleep apnea actually occurs in the mouth and throat, and using a custom-made oral appliance worn during sleep, it can actually prevent the lapses in breathing by slightly shifting the jaw to keep the airway open. This is one option in sleep apnea treatment. The other option is a CPAP machine prescribed by your physician. If oral appliance therapy is right for you, we are trained to help you.
Dr. Kirk has taken hours of continuing education to provide oral appliance therapy for those suffering from mild to moderate sleep apnea, and with it, he can help a patient get the rest they deserve while safeguarding their overall health at the same time.
How to Get Started
If you believe that you or a loved one may be suffering from sleep apnea, you can start getting the help you need by contacting Dr. Kirk. At a consultation, he’ll perform a brief exam, and if he believes that you may be suffering from sleep apnea, he can organize for you to have a sleep study and be diagnosed by a sleep physician. From there, Dr. Kirk can work with your doctor to provide the treatment you need.
Don’t suffer through another sleepless night or drowsy day because of sleep apnea! Dr. Kirk and Grand Dental Studio are ready and able to help, so contact us today so you can start sleeping better.