Sleep Apnea FAQ

Sleep Apnea FAQ

What is Sleep Apnea?



Sleep Apnea, or Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a condition where breathing is interrupted during sleep because the airway becomes obstructed, usually by the soft tissue in the back of your throat. Your body responds by waking you up just enough to move, rousing you out of deep sleep, disturbing normal sleep patterns and causing you to not get enough rest. Those with OSA can experience hundreds of episodes each night without being aware of it.

What is Sleep Apnea?



Sleep Apnea, or Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a condition where breathing is interrupted during sleep because the airway becomes obstructed, usually by the soft tissue in the back of your throat. Your body responds by waking you up just enough to move, rousing you out of deep sleep, disturbing normal sleep patterns and causing you to not get enough rest. Those with OSA can experience hundreds of episodes each night without being aware of it.

How serious is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?



Yes. OSA is a serious, chronic problem that, left untreated, can contribute to numerous health problems, including:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease and stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Depression
  • Driving or work-related accidents
  • Memory loss
  • Headaches
  • Irritability
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Impaired concentration

What are the symptoms of Sleep Apnea?



There are many symptoms and side effects of OSA:
  • Extremely loud, disruptive snoring
  • Choking or gasping for breath while sleeping
  • Waking up with headaches and/or dry throat
  • Having trouble concentrating
  • Memory or learning problems
  • General irritability, mood swings or depression
  • Chronic sleepiness — feeling tired all the time even if it seems like you’re getting enough hours of sleep at night
  • Nodding off easily (For example, while reading, watching TV or stopped at a traffic light

How serious is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?


Yes. OSA is a serious, chronic problem that, left untreated, can contribute to numerous health problems, including:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease and stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Depression
  • Driving or work-related accidents
  • Memory loss
  • Headaches
  • Irritability
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Impaired concentration

What are the symptoms of Sleep Apnea?


There are many symptoms and side effects of OSA:
  • Extremely loud, disruptive snoring
  • Choking or gasping for breath while sleeping
  • Waking up with headaches and/or dry throat
  • Having trouble concentrating
  • Memory or learning problems
  • General irritability, mood swings or depression
  • Chronic sleepiness — feeling tired all the time even if it seems like you’re getting enough hours of sleep at night
  • Nodding off easily (For example, while reading, watching TV or stopped at a traffic light

Can Sleep Apnea be treated?



Fortunately, OSA has several different treatment options, including using a CPAP machine, surgery, lifestyle changes and oral appliances. Once you have been diagnosed with OSA, your medical team can help you determine which one is the right solution for you.


How can I tell if I have Sleep Apnea?



If you are concerned that you might be suffering from OSA, start by talking to your physician. They’ll conduct a physical exam, take your medical history and will likely ask you and your bed partner to keep a diary of your sleep habits for a week or two. You may have to do a sleep study as well to more closely monitor your sleeping patterns. If you are diagnosed with Sleep Apnea, you may be referred to a dental sleep specialist to help determine whether an oral appliance is the best course of treatment for you.

Can Sleep Apnea be treated?



Fortunately, OSA has several different treatment options, including using a CPAP machine, surgery, lifestyle changes and oral appliances. Once you have been diagnosed with OSA, your medical team can help you determine which one is the right solution for you.


How can I tell if I have Sleep Apnea?



If you are concerned that you might be suffering from OSA, start by talking to your physician. They’ll conduct a physical exam, take your medical history and will likely ask you and your bed partner to keep a diary of your sleep habits for a week or two. You may have to do a sleep study as well to more closely monitor your sleeping patterns. If you are diagnosed with Sleep Apnea, you may be referred to a dental sleep specialist to help determine whether an oral appliance is the best course of treatment for you.

Is CPAP my only option for treatment?



You may not have to use a CPAP machine. Many people with OSA are successfully treated with oral appliances that adjust jaw placement to keep their airways open. At Dental Sleep Alternatives, we specialize in the use of oral appliances to treat sleep apnea. Start by getting a referral from your doctor, or talk to us and we’ll connect you with one of our referring physicians. Once you have a proper medical order, you can schedule your appointment with Dental Sleep Alternatives. We’ll get you fitted for an appliance, train you in its usage and care, and follow up with you to make sure everything is working as it should. Then you’ll follow up with your referring physician to see how much you are benefitting from healthy, sound sleep.

Is CPAP my only option for treatment?



You may not have to use a CPAP machine. Many people with OSA are successfully treated with oral appliances that adjust jaw placement to keep their airways open. At Dental Sleep Alternatives, we specialize in the use of oral appliances to treat sleep apnea. Start by getting a referral from your doctor, or talk to us and we’ll connect you with one of our referring physicians. Once you have a proper medical order, you can schedule your appointment with Dental Sleep Alternatives. We’ll get you fitted for an appliance, train you in its usage and care, and follow up with you to make sure everything is working as it should. Then you’ll follow up with your referring physician to see how much you are benefitting from healthy, sound sleep.

Check out all of our Sleep Apnea Services

If you’re suffering from OSA, contact us today.

Here’s what they’re saying about us


Check out all of our Sleep Apnea Services


If you’re suffering from OSA, contact us today.


Here’s what they’re saying about us