Sleep Apnea, What is it?

Did you know?

Dr. Hibret Benjamin is able to screen for and treat Sleep Apnea in office?

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep Apnea is a disorder in which your breathing may be interrupted while you’re sleeping for periods of 10 seconds or more. The interruptions that you may be experiencing can occur multiple times a night and cause disrupted sleep or gasping of air (UCSF Health). 

Last year, a “study ‘Global Prevalence of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)’ was conducted by an international panel of researchers seeking to provide a clear scope of the impact of the chronic sleep-disordered breathing condition. The previous estimation of OSA prevalence (100 million)’ has more than doubled to 936 million people world wide are impacted by sleep apnea daily (Sleep Review Mag).

Last weekend, Dr. Benjamin attended a conference to help her further her expertise in Sleep Apnea treatment. Here she was able to further explore the dentist’s role in helping both children and adults screen and treat obstructive Sleep Apnea right in her own office.

According to the American Dental Association (ADA), Dentists are encouraged to screen their patients for Sleep Apnea and should be able to recognize the following symptoms: sleepiness, choking, snoring or witnessed apneas.

If you believe you suffer from symptoms of Sleep Apnea, Dr. Benjamin can work with you to help you find the right treatment so you can get a good night’s sleep. Upon your visit, Dr. Benjamin will ask you a series of questions to help identify the problem. Do you have frequent headaches? Do you clench or grind your teeth? Do you have trouble breathing at night? Furthermore, she will provide you with a questionnaire, GASP, to help identify risk factors you may display for sleep breathing disorders.

Dr. Benjamin can play a big role in the identification of Obstructive Sleep Apnea as you are more often to see her than your physician. She will work with your physician and other appropriate medical professionals to identify and treat the problem while finding the best possible solution.

Dr. Benjamin’s approach to help treat Sleep Apena is to use oral appliances, orthodontic options or oral surgical procedures. All of these dental approaches help to increase the volume of your upper airway while also moving the tongue forward, away from the throat to allow for better breathing. The overall approach is to help you breath better.

If you believe you or anyone in your family has Sleep Apnea, please make an appointment with our office today.

It is important to remember that it is not just adults who suffer from Obstructive Sleep Apnea, children also are affected. One symptom that your child might be affected by sleep apnea is bed wetting. If you notice frequent bed wetting along with other symptoms such as daytime sleepiness, irritability, headaches, bruxism, or any other concerning symptoms, mention this to Dr. Benjamin during your child’s dental exam.

Remember, we are here to help you. We can screen for Sleep Apnea right in our office and help you determine what is the issue and work with you find an appropriate solution. If we do not have the answer, we will help you find the appropriate medical doctors to help manage your situation.

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