Sleep apnea is related to snoring, and it results from an obstructed airway that can stop your breathing over and over again when you sleep. It deprives you of both oxygen and much-needed rest and can lead to fatigue, sudden waking, gasping for breath, and increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Drs. Murphree and Reed can treat your apnea with a simple device to open up your airway. They’ll also help you obtain coverage through your insurance company, which can make it very affordable for you.
What is Sleep Apnea?
With sleep apnea, as with snoring, the soft tissues at the back of your throat become constricted when you sleep. Partial constriction leads to the vibrations we call snoring, but complete constriction, as shown at the left, leads to loss of oxygen and causes you to wake up. Since you immediately go back to sleep, you may not remember waking up, but this cycle can happen hundreds of times during a normal sleep period.
Detecting Sleep Apnea
We work with Home Sleep, LLC, which provides an at-home sleep test for your convenience. You will fill out a questionnaire, and one of the physicians from Home Sleep will discuss your symptoms with you and send you the sleep test. The physician will then read the results and send us the appropriate prescription.
Appropriate Sleep Apnea Treatments
If your sleep apnea is very mild, simple lifestyle changes like losing weight, avoiding sleeping medications, and not eating before you sleep may help. But if your symptoms are more severe, the physician may prescribe a device that will keep your lower jaw in a forward position to open your airway as shown at the left.
One of the devices Drs. Murphree and Reed use for this purpose is the Myerson device. You can see what it looks like to the right. We will take an impression of your teeth and can fabricate the device in about 15 minutes. The straps on the side can be adjusted to a variety of positions, and this device leaves your jaw free to move in every direction but backwards, leading to increased comfort while you sleep.
If you would like to find out more about your sleep apnea, call our office or compete our request an appointment form. We will help you find a good time that fits your schedule.