Who Needs a Mouth Guard?

Do you wear a mouth guard? Maybe you feel like you don’t need to because you don’t play a sport, but there are many reasons people wear mouth guards that have nothing to do with athletic activities. Mouth guards can be a significant financial investment for some people, but believe it or not, they can often pay for themselves over time, especially when it comes to wear and tear on the teeth. Here are a few ways in which anyone can benefit from wearing a mouth guard.

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Sleep Apnea Ruins More than Just Sleep

An estimated 30 million adults suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, a condition that causes stopping and restarting of breathing during sleep. Obstructive sleep apnea is caused by the upper airway collapsing while the body is in the reclined position. It can cause snoring, gasping and choking noises while the affected person sleeps. Unfortunately, it can also cause a lot more trouble for sufferers, especially when left untreated. If you’re still not convinced that your obstructive sleep apnea is worth taking seriously, check out these reasons for treating this dangerous condition.

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Are Sleep Orthotics Better?

If you have obstructive sleep apnea, you may have been led to believe that CPAP therapy is the only treatment option. The problem is, CPAP is often uncomfortable, and as a result many people who are prescribed CPAP therapy simply do not use their machine, rendering it useless in treating their apnea. But the good news is there is a solution. Custom sleep orthotics can be an excellent alternative to CPAP therapy. Here’s why.

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Hidden Causes of Dry Mouth

We’ve probably all experienced a dry mouth at one point or another, thanks to dehydration. But what you may not know is that there’s a different type of dry mouth - chronic dry mouth - that can be much more difficult to get rid of than by simply drinking water. For this type of dry mouth, there can be many causes that you may not even realize are there.

Dry mouth is more than just an uncomfortable inconvenience. It can cause cavities because the lack of saliva in your mouth means you aren’t washing away harmful plaque bacteria in your mouth. If you’re wondering why your mouth is always dry, here are just a few surprise causes of dry mouth, and what you can do to fix it.

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The Many Risks of Sleep Apnea

An estimated 22 million Americans suffer from the not-so-silent sleep disorder known as sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is defined as a sleep disorder that causes those affected to repeatedly stop and restart breathing throughout the night. This often translates to restless nights, causing health issues such as lethargy and fatigue that reverberate throughout their waking day. But emerging research is finding that sleep apnea may be causing more problems than just restless nights and tired days. Here’s what you should know about the dangers of sleep apnea.

There are three main types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea, central sleep apnea and complex sleep apnea syndrome. Of these three main apnea types, the most common is obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when there is an obstruction to the throat muscles, such as pressure on other parts of the throat caused by obesity. Obstructive sleep apnea is an especially dangerous form of sleep apnea because it is usually caused by and occurs with other health problems.

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Three Sleep Myths: Busted

When it comes to sleeping, there’s a lot of misinformation about what’s healthy and what’s not. But unfortunately, what you don’t know really can hurt you. Check out these three sleep-related myths and the real science behind them.

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Sleep Apnea May Cause Childhood Obesity

According to a recent study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, sleep apnea during pregnancy could pose significant risks to more than just the pregnant mother. The study found that expectant mothers who had sleep apnea had higher levels of blood glucose, which in turn affected infant growth patterns both in and out of the womb.

Unfortunately, these growth patterns often resulted in problems later in the unborn baby’s life, such as childhood obesity.

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Five Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a serious condition that affects approximately 22 million people in the United States. It is categorized as the starting and stopping of breathing during sleep. Often, people with sleep apnea stop breathing for more than 10 seconds at a time, anywhere from five to 100 times an hour. Worse yet, because they are asleep, they don’t realize it's happening, making a bad situation potentially deadly.

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The Jaw and the Airway

Have you ever thought about what your jaw has to do with the breathing process? Many patients are unaware that the struggles they have getting quality rest at night actually relate directly with dentistry. Simply put, the upper jaw must be wide enough to accommodate the tongue so that the airway can remain open at night.

Nasal breathing is an optimal bodily function. Everything about the nose is designed to maximize oxygen flow in the body. Nasal hairs trap bacteria before it enters the bloodstream and the shape and structure of the nose helps facilitate optimal oxygen distribution rate. The mouth serves as an OK backup, but if relied on over a long period of time puts an unhealthy amount of strain on the body.

The most common indication of an airway issue is snoring at night. Frequent, loud snoring is especially concerning as it could be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. It’s also possible to experience a breathing disorder without noticeable snoring, so the best thing to do is see a professional if you fell depleted of energy even after a full night’s rest.

Do you have any questions about the jaw or sleep apnea? Please don’t hesitate to give me a call at 516-882-1764.

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Sleep Apnea and Women

About 22 million Americans receive treatment for sleep apnea and doctors estimate there are millions more sufferers who are unaware or misdiagnosed. When it comes to the classic case, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is fairly straightforward to spot. The profile is typically an overweight male who recognizes snoring loudly and frequently. But part of the barrier to reaching other patients in need is lack of education about the different ways sleep apnea can manifest in people.

Because of this misunderstanding, experts in the field suspect that many untreated cases are women. Women are likely to describe symptoms such as insomnia and depression, which can lead physicians down the wrong path. It’s easy to confuse problems such as difficulty falling asleep at night with stress-induced anxiety. These women then begin treatment for depression and never undercover the true source.

Women with sleep apnea are commonly misdiagnosed with anemia, cardiac disease, depression, diabetes, fatigue, fibromyalgia, hypertension, insomnia, menopausal changes and obesity. Having a sleep study done is the only way to get complete and conclusive information about how your airway is functioning. Like anything else, if there is an issue it’s better to identify it so we can provide the best treatment to get your health back on track.

Sleep apnea disturbs vital bodily functions and causes life-threatening conditions. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you experience symptoms that could be related to sleep apnea: 516-882-1764.

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