Sleep apnea is a common disorder that affects millions of men, women, and children but is often undiagnosed, despite the potentially serious consequences of the disorder such as heart disease, obesity, and clinical depression. At Makhoul Dentistry in Mission Viejo, Dr. E. M. Makhoul has helped many patients overcome sleep apnea and finally get a good night’s rest.
Sleep Apnea Defined
With obstructive sleep apnea, the most common type that we see in patients, your airway is blocked by the relaxation of soft tissues in the back of the throat while you sleep causing you to stop breathing for 10 to 20 seconds. This disrupts your sleep, sometimes hundreds of times in a single night, which prevents your body from getting the deep restorative sleep that it needs.
Warning Signs for Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea often goes undiagnosed and untreated because people simply do not realize they have it. Because it happens at night during sleep, it is difficult to self-diagnose. Warning signs to look for include:
- Excessive snoring
- Waking up choking or gasping in the middle of the night
- Waking up during the night feeling short of breath
- Daytime exhaustion and fatigue
- Sore throat or dry mouth in the mornings
- Loss of mental focus and forgetfulness
- Moodiness and irritability
Chronic snoring every night is often noticed by a partner and often dismissed as a quirk. However, it is a great indicator of a bigger problem. If your partner notices habitual snoring, you may be suffering from sleep apnea. If you sleep alone, you can record yourself sleeping to see if you snore.
It is estimated that at least 10 million Americans have unrecognized sleep apnea. If you believe your snoring or these other warning factors might indicate a more serious problem, speak to experienced dentist Dr. E. M. Makhoul in Mission Viejo today by calling (949) 364-3724.
"I have been a patient of Dr. Makhoul since 1983. He is legendary for providing the most gentle dental care, but beyond that, he is a perfectionist and his work is flawless. Dr. Makhoul studies and masters each new technique and will settle for nothing less than the best for his patients." - Debbie K., San Clemente
Complications of Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea not only affects your sleep quality, it can also affect many other areas of your life. Complications and risks caused by sleep apnea may include:
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Difficulty concentrating
- Increased risk of car accidents
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Chest pain in bed
- Risk of stroke
Treatment for Sleep Apnea
At Makhoul Dentistry, we use advanced dental technology to treat sleep apnea very successfully and in a very comfortable and inexpensive way. Many of our patients who felt frustrated after seeing other health providers and after trying different treatment modalities (or were told that they needed surgery) found Dr Makhoul's treatment to be much more acceptable and a lot easier on the pocketbook.
How Dentistry Can Help
By now you're probably wondering: What does Dr Makhoul have to do with all this? Here's the connection: Snoring or sleep apnea can sometimes be treated with an oral appliance available at the dental office that's designed to hold the lower jaw forward during sleep. This repositioning of the jaw moves the tongue away from the back of the throat, reducing the potential for obstruction. This treatment is backed by a great deal of scientific evidence; it's a good remedy to try before moving on to more complicated breathing devices or surgery to remove excess tissues in the throat.
Only a dentist can fabricate, fit, adjust, monitor, and treat complications associated with Oral Appliance Therapy used in managing Sleep-Related Breathing Disorder (SRBD). So if you or a loved one is experiencing any combination of the signs and symptoms mentioned above, please call (949) 364-3724 for a personal evaluation with Dr. Makhoul.
Dr. Makhoul is pleased to welcome patients from Mission Viejo, Laguna Niguel, Ladera Ranch, Laguna Hills and of course all the other areas of Orange County and Southern California.