Sleep Apnea Sarasota, FL

In the United States, approximately 25 million adults have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a chronic condition that causes individuals to pause breathing hundreds of times a night. Sleep apnea occurs when muscles relax during sleep, allowing soft tissues to collapse and block the airway.

During periods of apnea, breathing pauses are followed by brief awakenings that disturb sleep. Common signs of OSA, the most common type of sleep apnea, include gasping, snoring, or choking sounds during sleep. At Integrated Dental, Dr. Melvin Benson helps patients with sleep apnea. Learn more about how he can spot and address sleep apnea in his Sarasota, FL, dental office. In addition to providing sleep apnea treatments, Dr. Benson offers many restorative dentistry services to new and existing patients.

Treat Sleep Apnea in Sarasota, Florida

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a disorder that affects a person’s breathing while they sleep. A patient with OSA will cease breathing up to 400 times a night. Each time it can last 10-30 seconds. They briefly wake up to resume breathing again although many people do not remember actually waking up.

There are muscles in the back of the throat that support soft tissues such as the tongue and soft palate. When these muscles relax temporarily, the airway closes and oxygen cannot come in. Only when the patient wakes up can breathing resume.

Signs of Sleep Apnea

Many people have sleep apnea and do not even realize it. The signs and symptoms can often be attributed to other things. For some, being extremely tired while awake or a partner saying they snore excessively may be the only signs. Additionally, not everyone that snores or is tired during the day has sleep apnea. Oftentimes it takes a complete exam from a medical professional and a sleeps study to be diagnosed with sleep apnea. Common signs of obstructive sleep apnea often include:

  • Loud snoring
  • Morning headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Dry mouth
  • Daytime sleepiness

The Risk Factors of Sleep Apnea

There is no single cause for sleep apnea. However, there are several risk factors that would make someone more susceptible to developing it. OSA is more common in men as well as patients with obesity, excessively thick necks, narrow airways, enlarged tonsils, and misaligned jaws. Additionally, patients that smoke or abuse alcohol are at a higher risk of developing sleep apnea. 

Once you develop sleep apnea, you are at a higher risk for serious health problems. This includes high blood pressure, heart disease, chronic acid reflux, stroke, diabetes, and erectile dysfunction. Treating sleep apnea is very important for many reasons. Avoiding serious these serious health conditions is one of them.


Sleep Apnea Treatment in Sarasota, FL

There is a range of treatment options for sleep apnea, including oral appliance therapy, CPAP therapy, and surgery. Together, we help decide which treatment option best suits your needs and health.

Oral appliances are similar to mouthguards because they cover teeth. However, they differ from mouthguards because they have an added metal hinge that moves the lower jaw forward. Moving the jaw opens up the airway.

Patients with moderate to severe sleep apnea will benefit more from a CPAP machine. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) delivers air through a mask or nosepiece worn during sleep. If a patient has severe sleep apnea symptoms, we will refer them to a specialist for surgery. Sometimes, patients will require surgery to reposition tissues in the throat.

Oral Appliance Therapy for Sleep Apnea

If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, Dr. Benson can help you find relief with a oral sleep appliance. This device is designed to help you breath continuously through the night without any obstruction. An oral sleep appliance looks very similar to a regular mouth guard. It will help open the airway to allow for proper air flow and to reposition the tongue and jaw to keep the airway open. If the oral sleep appliance is worn while sleeping, you will be able to breathe normally throughout the entire night and feel rested when you wake up. The benefits of using an oral sleep appliance to treat your sleep disorder include:

  • No need to wear a restrictive mask
  • No tube running from your face to a machine
  • No air is blowing in your face
  • Convenient and easier to travel with
  • Inexpensive

Schedule a Dental Consultation for Sleep Apnea Treatment in Sarasota, FL

Many patients believe that a CPAP is the only treatment for sleep apnea. However, you have other choices if you suffer from mild to moderate OSA. If you have any symptoms of sleep apnea, it is important to seek medical care and receive a diagnosis. Treatment can prevent further major health conditions. Call our dental office today at 941-270-9755. On our website, you may also request a dental appointment with Dr. Benson. Let our team know if you have questions about your symptoms, and we can help you.