Spring season brings blooming trees and the pollens trees produce can irritate your nasal passages and airways. Allergy symptoms caused by hay fever and other seasonal allergies can also cause more serious sleeping difficulties. As a result, your sleep apnea can get worse in the springtime.
Allergic Rhinitis Symptoms
Allergens, which increase in the spring season, irritate and inflame the nasal passages, causing allergy symptoms (allergic rhinitis). You may be suffering from allergic rhinitis if you are experiencing:
Itchy nose, mouth, eyes, and throat
Problems with smelling
When you’re experiencing congestion and swelling, it causes your upper airway to narrow. This narrowing can increase the risk of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. If you’re already experiencing snoring or sleep apnea – allergic rhinitis can make these conditions worse.
Adverse Effects from Lack of Sleep
Allergic rhinitis can cause sleeping problems that affect your quality of sleep. This can cause many issues during the day because you aren’t getting a good night’s rest. You may feel excessively sleepy, fatigued, experience memory loss, and have difficulties concentrating. Your quality of life declines because it’s difficult to function properly during daylight hours.
How to Reduce Your Allergic Rhinitis Symptoms
You can reduce the symptoms of seasonal allergies you’re experiencing by:
Staying indoors in the early morning and on windy days when there’s the highest pollen count
Keeping your doors & windows closed to block pollen from entering
Removing your clothing when you enter your home
Washing your clothing and bedding often
Using a humidifier to keep the air moist, which prevents your nasal passages and airways from drying out
Taking antihistamines and nasal decongestants to help relieve symptoms
Taking steamy showers to clear your sinuses
Using a saline spray to clean and clear your nose
Avoiding caffeine before bedtime
Oral Appliance Therapy: A Non-Drug Snoring and Sleep Apnea Solution
Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT) effectively treats snoring and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) by keeping your airways open while you sleep. A custom-fitted oral sleep appliance improves your sleep, restores your alertness, and revitalizes your health. Oral Appliance Therapy is a good alternative if you have snoring issues or OSA and you can’t or won’t tolerate positive airway pressure therapy, such as CPAP or APAP.
Oral appliances are comfortable to use. Since they are not sold over the counter, they have to be prescribed by a doctor. To obtain an OAT, you’ll need a consultation with your doctor that includes a thorough dental examination.
If you are a good candidate for Oral Appliance Therapy, dental impressions of your upper and lower teeth will be taken along with a bite registration. Using this data, a custom snoring mouth guard is crafted. Since there are a variety of different types of oral appliances, this data will also help your doctor determine which appliance is best suited for your specific needs.
Take the Next Step to a Good Night’s Sleep: Find Out More Information on Oral Appliance Therapy
If you are interested in learning more about Oral Appliance Therapy for snoring or sleep apnea in Philadelphia, schedule an appointment today with eos dental sleep. We’re experts for the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea.
Snoring is associated with a higher risk of developing different health issues, but it can be hard to determine if you’re a snorer. How can you tell if you have a chronic snoring problem or an occasional one, such as when you’re sick? Learn more about how you can find out if you’re a snorer and what to do about it.
Symptoms of a Snoring Problem
The sound of snoring is an obvious sign that you’re a snorer, but you can’t tell whether or not you do it since you’re asleep. A partner or family member can let you know if you snore on a regular basis. However, there are also other signs that might indicate that you have a snoring problem. Snoring can occur along with obstructive sleep apnea, which is a sleep disorder where you suddenly stop breathing during sleep. If snoring is part of this disorder, you might notice certain symptoms, such as the following:
Fatigue during the day
Headaches as soon as you wake up
Sore throat when you wake up
Restless during the night
Chest pain at night
Gasping or trouble breathing during the night
Causes of Snoring
You might snore for short periods of time when you have a cold or other illness that causes nasal congestion. If you’re a chronic snorer, this can occur due to different causes. You might end up snoring on a regular basis if you have a smaller/narrow airway or if you have extra tissue in your throat. Snoring can also become a problem if you have chronic nasal problems or if you sleep on your back. Your risk of snoring frequently is also higher if you’re overweight or have a family history of chronic snoring or sleep apnea.
How to Avoid Snoring
The good news is that there are many things you can do to stop snoring. Some of these involve making lifestyle changes, such as the following:
Losing excess weight and maintaining a healthy weight
Managing chronic sinus or nasal problems
Getting enough sleep
Not drinking alcohol before going to bed
Sleeping on your side rather than on your back
If lifestyle changes aren’t enough to stop snoring, you might need to look into other forms of treatment. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines are one option, but not everyone can use them comfortably. If you’re not a good candidate for a CPAP machine, oral appliance therapy is another solution. This type of therapy involves wearing an oral appliance that help ensure that your airway remains open while you sleep.
Dangers of Snoring
Snoring from time to time generally isn’t a problem, yet chronic snoring can raise your risk of having certain health issues. Since some of these health problems are serious, it’s important to take steps toward preventing snoring from occurring. Some of the complications you might develop when you’re a chronic snorer include the following:
Excessive drowsiness during the day, that can increase your risk of being in a car accident or making errors at work
Increased risk of having high blood pressure, stroke, or heart problems
Trouble focusing, making decisions, and concentrating
Moodiness or anger due to poor sleep quality
If you snore on a regular basis, contact eos dental to set up an appointment. We can help you reduce snoring with the use of an oral appliance, so you can enjoy better sleep quality and a lower risk of health problems.
Snoring might seem harmless, but it can indicate that you have a sleep disorder, like sleep apnea. When you snore on a regular basis, it can also affect your sleep quality and prevent your spouse or significant other from getting a good night’s sleep as well. If you’re worried about having to undergo surgery to correct this problem, keep in mind that there are non-surgical treatment options available.
Causes of Snoring
When snoring occurs, it’s due to the vibration of tissue in your throat while you sleep. You can have temporary snoring from a cold or sinus problems, or you can end up with chronic snoring from allergies, having a narrow airway, sleeping in a certain position or getting poor sleep. Your risk of snoring is higher if you are overweight or obese, have chronic nasal problems or have a family history of sleep apnea. Also, if your tonsils or adenoids are larger, you have an increased risk of snoring.
Signs of Snoring
It can be difficult to know whether or not you have a chronic snoring problem. In some cases, family members might tell you that they hear you snoring at night. If you suspect that you have a snoring problem and don’t have anyone around to let you know for sure, there are certain symptoms to watch for, including:
Waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat
Feeling sleepy or tired during the day
Having a harder time making decisions and handling other cognitive tasks
Waking up suddenly during the night gasping
Having a headache when you wake up
Non-surgical Treatment Options
Snoring occurs due to problems with your upper airway. While there are surgical procedures to open up this airway more and prevent it from becoming too narrow – they carry the risk of complications – such as bleeding and infections. Non-surgical treatment options for snoring include using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) mask, wearing an oral appliance and making lifestyle changes, like losing weight.
In some cases, lifestyle changes aren’t enough to completely stop snoring. Wearing a CPAP mask can help, but not everyone has success with this type of treatment. Oral appliance therapy provides an alternative option for those who can’t wear a CPAP mask and do not want to undergo surgery. This type of treatment involves wearing a customized appliance at night that helps reduce snoring.
Benefits of Non-surgical Treatment
Non-surgical treatments for snoring provide safer ways to stop this from occurring on a regular basis. When you use oral appliance therapy or another form of non-surgical treatment, you don’t have to worry about infections, nerve damage, tissue damage, bleeding or other complications. Instead, you can depend on having a more comfortable way to handle snoring problems. Keep in mind that chronic snoring puts you at risk of developing other health issues, so it’s important overall to deal with this problem.
Not everyone makes a good candidate for non-surgical treatments for snoring. Some people can’t use CPAP masks comfortably or safely, for example. Oral appliance therapy can be used instead to help stop snoring. Good candidates for oral appliance therapy are those who have a chronic snoring problem and are looking for alternative options to surgery and CPAP masks.
If you need more information on oral appliance therapy for snoring, please contact eos dental sleep to make an appointment. We can provide you with individualized treatment that offers an alternative to surgery and CPAP use to stop snoring.
Sleep apnea is an extremely common yet potentially dangerous sleep disorder, so it’s important to get an accurate diagnosis to receive effective treatment.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects more than 18 million Americans – many of whom do not realize that they may have it.
It’s described as repeated stoppages of breathing during sleep, which can cause the oxygen level in your blood to dip. This puts a strain on your heart over time and can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including excessive daytime sleepiness and fatigue, as well as morning headaches.
How can it be treated?
Sleep apnea is caused by blocked airways, so treatment focuses on keeping these airways open at night. The most common forms of treatment include the following:
CPAP – A continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine delivers a steady stream of air through tubes into a mask you wear over your mouth and nose at night. Although it’s often an effective type of treatment, many people use it sporadically or abandon its use entirely. Due to the fact that the mask can be uncomfortable to wear, and patients often find the forced air difficult to adjust to.
Oral Appliance Therapy – Oral appliance therapy is generally used as an alternative for patients who have trouble adjusting to a CPAP machine. These soft, comfortable plastic devices are worn only at night. They’re similar to mouthguards or oral retainers, and are very effective at treating sleep apnea. Uniquely designed, created and fit for each patient’s mouth – they help keep airways open by gently coaxing the jaw/tongue forward. Many patients find them easier to use, clean and transport when compared to CPAP. Patients who able to easily keep wearing their appliances, find that they are able to sleep better, have more energy throughout the day, and have an improved quality of life.
What else can you do to alleviate your sleep apnea symptoms?
Sleep apnea can put your heart health at risk, and daytime sleepiness and fatigue can make you more likely to have an accident throughout your day. In addition to getting an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment, you can also try the following tips:
Sleep On Your Side Try sleeping on your side instead of your back. If you sleep on your back, your airways are more likely to partially close.
Avoid Sedatives Avoid taking sedatives or drinking alcohol, especially close to bedtime. These substances can make your throat tissues loosen more than usual – making your airway more likely to become stuck.
Lose Weight If Possible Excess weight can make the tissues in and around your airway larger and thicker.
Stop Smoking Smoking can make your upper airway – including your throat and uvula – swell over time.
To find the best sleep apnea treatment, make an appointment today with eos dental sleep in Philadelphia. We offer individualized treatment plans for each patient. Our practice specializes in offering alternatives to CPAP, such as oral appliance therapy, and will work with you to find an effective treatment that’s comfortable and easy for you to use.
Sleep apnea is a common, frustrating condition that can develop for a number of reasons. Unfortunately, it’s rarely something you can handle yourself. Sleep apnea has two forms, obstructive and central, and both have short- and long-term affects on your health and quality of life. Luckily a sleep apnea specialist can identify the best treatment for you and help you start getting the rest you need.
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
When you have sleep apnea – you stop breathing for short periods of time over the course of the night and when you start to run out of oxygen, you end up waking up a bit. Because these episodes of waking up can happen several times per hour, you end up not getting a lot of sleep.
Common symptoms that you might have after a night of apneic episodes include:
Dry mouth and throat
Moodiness and irritability
Brain fog and an inability to concentrate
The side effects of apnea can extend past the morning. You can have trouble concentrating on work and your long-term performance take a dive. If your bed partner can’t sleep because of your snoring, your relationship can find itself on the rocks. And even if your partner sleeps in another room, your relationship can still suffer because of your moodiness and other behavior.
Your health can also suffer long-term. Your blood pressure, risk for heart disease, and risk for diabetes all go up due to the sleep deprivation that sleep apnea can cause.
One thing to keep in mind is that you don’t have to have all of the symptoms to have sleep apnea. For example, in central sleep apnea, your brain does not send the right signals to your muscles to tell you to breathe while asleep, and snoring is often not a factor.
Risk Factors of Sleep Apnea
If you snore, you don’t necessarily have sleep apnea. However, snoring is a major risk factor; even if you didn’t have apnea when you were younger and snoring, you are at greater risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea as you get older. You’re also more at risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea if you gain a lot of weight or are already obese, if you sleep with your head at a strange angle, or if you smoke, drink, or use sedating medication.
One other issue to watch out for is if you have a family history or personal risk factors for stroke or heart trouble. Central sleep apnea can occur even in healthy people for undetermined reasons, but the development of central sleep apnea can also be a sign that something is wrong in terms of a developing stroke or heart disease. If you feel terrible when you wake up and think you might have sleep apnea, but you don’t think there is anything causing an obstruction, contact a sleep apnea specialist immediately.
When to See a Doctor
If you have any of the symptoms of sleep apnea, even just a general sense of not sleeping well, you may need to contact a sleep apnea specialist. You’ll go through an evaluation and sleep test, and the specialist will discuss your options. You may need to use a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) mask, or there could be an alternative treatment that eases the apnea permanently.
Don’t let these symptoms continue to get worse and affect the quality of your life. Contact the specialists at eos dental sleep to find a solution and let you enjoy your sleep time.
If you have sleep apnea, you may have noticed that your symptoms can worsen during winter months. This can have a significant effect on your daily well-being and overall health, even following the winter season. Patients may be more inclined to seek CPAP therapy or another sleep apnea treatment option during the winter to manage their sleep problem that is actually present year-round.
How can the coldness of winter affect your sleep apnea?
Winter weather can worsen your sleep apnea symptoms due to the following:
Weather conditions such as high atmospheric pressure
Increased levels of carbon monoxide
More frequent upper-airway problems, such as colds and congestion
Wood burning to heat homes leading to irritated airways
Allergens spread by forced air heating
Dry air leading to irritated airways
What are the symptoms of this sleep disorder?
The sleep disorder sleep apnea can cause one or more of the following symptoms:
Pauses in breathing witnessed by another person
Loud, chronic snoring
Excessive daytime sleepiness despite spending enough time in bed
Snorting or gasping sounds during sleep
Waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat
Difficulty concentrating or remembering
Sleep apnea can also increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
How is sleep apnea treated?
The following are the most common ways to treat sleep apnea:
This machine delivers a stream of air through tubing and a mask you wear on your face.
It can be effective, but many people don’t use it every night or abandon its use entirely because it can be uncomfortable.
Oral Appliance Therapy
Oral devices are often worn by patients who have trouble using a CPAP machine. They’re custom-made to fit each patient and address his or her needs. Your doctor and a lab create a mold that fits the unique shape of your mouth and teeth.
Similar to a mouth guard or orthodontic retainer, oral appliances are worn only at night. Oral appliances are very effective in treating sleep apnea and snoring because they slightly position the tongue or jaw forward to help the airway stay open. Patients usually find it comfortable and easy to use, transport, and clean.
If you snore or have other symptoms of sleep apnea, make an appointment today with eos dental sleep. Dr. Levin can help you find the best possible treatment, and if you’ve already been diagnosed with this sleep disorder and are looking for a CPAP alternative, we can provide you with a custom-made oral appliance.
Loud snoring is often the topic of jokes as well as an annoyance for the snorer’s sleep partner. But if the snoring continues and you feel extremely sleepy during the day, it may be time to see a sleep apnea specialist to get the help you need.
Sleep apnea is a very common yet serious sleep disorder that’s characterized by repeated pauses in breathing while you sleep. You may not be aware of these stoppages since they probably don’t wake you up completely. As a result, many cases of sleep apnea are undiagnosed and untreated.
It can have serious effects on your health and well-being since your sleep consistently moves from a deeper stage into a lighter, less restful one. Your blood is also deprived of its normal amount of oxygen. Many troubling symptoms, as well as an increased risk of other chronic health issues, are associated with this sleep disorder.
What are the symptoms of sleep apnea?
Since many cases of sleep apnea go undiagnosed, it’s helpful to familiarize yourself with its symptoms so you can ask your doctor about them and get the treatment you need:
Chronic daytime sleepiness, even if you spend enough time in bed
Loud chronic snoring, especially when you sleep on your back
Pauses in breath noticed by another person
Gasping or choking sounds as your breathing resumes
If you’re experiencing the previous symptoms, you should make an appointment to see a sleep apnea specialist. He or she may recommend a sleep study, which is the only way to confirm or rule out a diagnosis of sleep apnea.
What are the treatment options for sleep apnea?
The following are some of the most common treatment options:
CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine – Often the first type of treatment tried, this machine delivers a low, steady stream of air through tubes and a mask you wear on your face. This helps keep your airway open as you sleep.
Oral appliances – Especially for patients who can’t tolerate a CPAP machine, an oral appliance can be an excellent alternative. It’s a comfortable custom-made device similar to a mouth guard, and it’s only worn at night. This appliance gently coaxes your jaw and/or tongue gently forward to help keep your airway open.
Lifestyle changes – Sleeping on your side, avoiding alcohol and sedatives, losing weight if you need to, and quitting smoking may help make your symptoms less severe.
Surgery – Sometimes a structural problem such as nasal polyps or a deviated septum is the underlying cause of sleep apnea. When that’s the case, you may need surgery.
If you’re experiencing any symptoms that may be associated with sleep apnea, make an appointment today for an evaluation with sleep apnea specialist Dr. Levin at eos dental sleep in Philadelphia, PA. We’ll gather the information needed to make an accurate diagnosis and provide the most effective, least invasive treatment possible.
Sleep apnea is a serious disorder that can cause risks far beyond sleep problems. It can even have a negative effect on your cardiovascular system and make your chances of having high blood pressure more likely.
In this blog, Dr. Marc Levin of eos dental sleep explains more about sleep apnea risks and the relationship between sleep apnea and high blood pressure.
What is sleep apnea?
This sleep disorder is characterized by pauses in your breathing as you sleep. This can occur hundreds of time a night, causing a lower level of oxygen in your blood. It can have an impact on many aspects of your health, leaving you feeling exhausted during the day and causing headaches as well as many other symptoms.
In addition, this disorder is linked to many serious sleep apnea risks, including high blood pressure.
What is the link between sleep apnea and high blood pressure?
Each time your breathing pauses while you sleep, your blood pressure drops and your heart rate slows down. When you start breathing again, your heart rate increases rapidly, and with repeated stops and starts, your blood pressure rises. This elevation in blood pressure can also carry over to your waking hours.
Sleep apnea is also much more common in patients who have resistant hypertension – high blood pressure that hasn’t been adequately controlled despite trying a variety of treatments.
What should you do if you have sleep apnea and high blood pressure?
Seeking treatment for sleep apnea can help the quality of your sleep as well as your blood pressure. CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), a device that delivers a low, steady stream of air that helps keep your airway open, is the most common way to treat sleep apnea. It also helps treat resistant hypertension in patients who have sleep apnea.
The same is true of oral appliances, which are custom-made mouth guard-like devices worn while you sleep. Patients who find CPAP to be too uncomfortable often wear them, and these devices can also help improve sleep apnea and reduce high blood pressure related to this sleep disorder.
If you have high blood pressure or sleep apnea, make an appointment today with Dr. Levin at eos dental sleep. We can help you get the sleep apnea treatment you need to sleep well and improve your overall health and sleep apnea risks, including a reduction in high blood pressure.
If you have sleep apnea, chances are pretty good that you’ve tried using a CPAP machine. While some patients can successfully use this treatment, others abandon it because it can be cumbersome and uncomfortable. For patients who can’t tolerate CPAP, dental appliances for sleep apnea can often be an effective, more comfortable alternative.
A dental appliance for sleep apnea is a mouth guard-like device that’s worn only when you sleep. It’s custom-made and fit by your doctor by using a plastic-like mold that forms to the unique shape of your mouth and teeth.
What is it used for?
This type of dental appliance is used to treat snoring and sleep apnea. Since sleep apnea is caused by an obstructed airway, a dental appliance is effective because it helps keep your airway open.
The following are the main types of dental appliances for sleep apnea:
Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD) – advances the tongue and soft tissue of the throat while coaxing the lower jaw gently forward to open up the airway
Tongue Retaining Device – uses suction to keep the tongue from collapsing backward during sleep and obstructing the airway
These devices are often used when a patient can’t tolerate a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine. CPAP delivers a steady stream of air through a mask that’s worn over your nose and mouth, and many patients have trouble wearing it comfortably. While it can be very effective, it needs to be used every night, and some patients stop using it completely due to discomfort.
What are the benefits?
The following are some common benefits of dental appliances:
Non-invasive – It requires no surgery or invasive procedure.
Better compliance – Many people who can’t tolerate a CPAP machine are able to use a dental appliance.
Effective – They’re effective in reducing symptoms associated with snoring and sleep apnea.
Very portable – Unlike the machine, tubes, and mask associated with CPAP, oral appliances for sleep apnea are small enough to fit into your pocket.
Easy to clean – There’s no tubing to worry about cleaning.
Quiet – Some CPAP machines can be noisy, but this isn’t an issue with oral appliances.
Comfortable – Most patients find oral appliances to be quite comfortable and easy to wear.
Less noticeable – Your bed partner won’t be able to see your appliance unless you have your mouth open.
Where can you find a dental appliance for sleep apnea?
At eos dental sleep, the top priority is helping patients get the restorative sleep they need. Dr. Levin and his staff don’t take a “one size fits all” approach to sleep apnea treatment since they realize that not everyone can use CPAP. They specialize in personalized care and in creating the type of dental appliance that suits your needs while being comfortable and easy to wear.
If you’re snoring or have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, make an appointment today with eos dental sleep In Philadelphia, PA. We’re committed to helping you improve your sleep and quality of life.
If you snore, it can be an indication that you have obstructive sleep apnea, which blocks your airways as you sleep and causes dangerous pauses in breathing. Many people who snore find that oral appliance therapy provides the quiet, restful sleep they need and alleviates symptoms associated with sleep apnea, such as daytime drowsiness and headaches.
Snoring occurs when the muscles in the roof of your mouth, tongue, and throat relax. Your tongue falls backward, and as the tissues in your throat relax, they partially obstruct your airway and vibrate, which causes the sound you make when you snore. The narrower your airway, the more your airflow becomes forced, which causes the tissues to vibrate more and make your snoring louder.
This obstruction of airflow can occur because of factors that include the following:
Bulky throat tissue – This is more likely to happen if you’re overweight or have large adenoids and/or tonsils.
Poor muscle tone in the throat and tongue – Muscles can relax too much and block your airway. This often happens as a result of the normal aging process but can also be worsened by the use of alcohol or sleeping pills.
What is oral appliance therapy?
Oral appliance therapy is an effective treatment option for people who snore and have mild to moderate sleep apnea, as well as those with severe sleep apnea who can’t tolerate the use of CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines. Although these machines are often the first type of treatment recommended, many people find them to be so uncomfortable that they use them only intermittently or stop using them completely.
What is an oral appliance?
This custom-made device is similar to an orthodontic retainer or a mouth guard worn during sports.
Your doctor will take physical or digital impressions and models of your teeth and mouth and send these to a lab for your custom-made appliance to be created. It will be fitted in-office, and your device will be tested and adjusted over time to make sure it’s comfortable and effective.
How do oral appliances work to treat snoring?
The appliance is worn only at night to gently coax your tongue, jaw, and/or soft tissues of the throat forward to help keep your airway open. Your doctor can recommend a specific type of oral appliance to correct the issue that’s causing your blocked airway and snoring.
Many people find an oral appliance easy to wear, comfortable, and effective. It often enables patients who can’t tolerate using a CPAP machine to get the effective treatment they need.