Sleep apnea is a common condition that can have very serious effects on your health. Dr. Tim Kelly offers sleep apnea treatment to improve patients' quality of sleep, and relieve symptoms like persistent fatigue and moodiness. Advancements in the field mean a simple oral appliance is often sufficient to treat the sleep disorder.
Sleep apnea is a condition where a patient's airway is constricted for a number of reasons and we just don't get a good night's sleep. The reason sleep apnea is such a dangerous disease is the side effects are profound. We know that it has an increase in patients of heart attacks and strokes, and imagine if you're tired all day. You're not as productive at work. You might get in an accident or something. Our body uses sleep as a healing process, so if you're not sleeping well you're just not functioning at your best.
Sleep apnea can be a very complex diagnosis. There are sleep doctors or MDs that specifically do that. We have take-home sleep apnea tests that we can determine if they do have sleep apnea. And we can also determine if a patient is clenching or grinding their teeth at night with this take-home test because we do know that the two are intimately related. So imagine if you're clenching or grinding your teeth, you're not breathing the same, and so the two go hand in hand.
We have the ability to help patients by understanding the clenching or grinding process and solving that. And if someone is a severe sleep apnea patient, we can refer them to the MD to get the appropriate care they need.
Sleep apnea is treated several different ways. The most common way that patients have heard about is wearing a CPAP machine. CPAP is a mask that you wear over your face and it actually forces air down your windpipe so you're getting air adequately all night.
But over the last several years we know that there's such a relationship with clenching and grinding and TMJ issues that if we get the muscles to relax by ceasing clenching and grinding by wearing a device in your mouth, when the muscles relax the airway tends to open. There are a variety of treatments, but if a patient is a mild sleep apnea patient, if we get the muscles to relax they may avoid having to wear a CPAP.