Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea

WHAT IS OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA?

Obstructive sleep apnea is condition in which the patient is unable to breathe while sleeping.  Unfortunately, the patient is often times unaware that he or she may have obstructive sleep apnea.

WHAT ARE SYMPTOMS OF OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA?

  • Snoring
  • Choking or gasping for air while sleeping, usually witnessed by a partner
  • Waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat
  • Un-refreshed sleep upon awakening
  • Excessive sleepiness during the day and falling asleep during inappropriate situations

A person wearing CPAP

UNTREATED SLEEP APNEA MAY CAUSE:

  • Poor Concentration and Decreased Work Performance
  • Morning Headaches
  • Weight Gain
  • Decreased Quality of Life
  • Marital Problems
  • Auto Accidents

NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF SLEEP APNEA ON YOUR HEALTH INCLUDE:

  • High Blood Pressure
  • Heart Disease
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Acid Reflux
  • Mood Disorders such as Depression

A person wearing a sleep apnea oral appliance

HOW IS OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA DIAGNOSED AND TREATED?

Obstructive sleep apnea is diagnosed by your physician through the use of a sleep test.  This usually takes place in a sleep lab.  Once diagnosed, obstructive sleep apnea can be treated with a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine which is worn with a mask.  Although many patients can successfully wear a CPAP machine, we can provide another solution for many patients.

ARE THERE ALTERNATIVES?

For those people looking for an effective alternative to the CPAP machine, Dr. Kim can offer a custom fitted oral appliance.  A custom fitted oral appliance can gently guide the jaw forward, thus opening up your airway to allow you to breathe again while sleeping.  There are numerous oral appliances on the market.  Dr. Kim will use his experience and expertise to recommend an appliance specific to your needs after a thorough history and clinical exam.