If you suffer from sleep apnea or breathing problems at night, Manhattan dentist Dr. Blaustein can treat your snoring and help you – and your partner – finally get a good night’s rest. Convenient office location serving New Yorkers from the West Village to Flatiron to the Upper West Side.
The word “apnea” means “without breath.” It’s scary to think that you may actually stop breathing at several points during the night, but sleep apnea is just as common as type 2 diabetes. If left untreated, sleep apnea can cause serious health problems. Results from a recent scientific study found that people with severe obstructive sleep apnea were five times more likely to die from cancer. Furthermore, severe sleep apnea almost doubles the risk of sudden cardiac death and quadruples the risk of suffering a stroke.
Why risk cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, weight gain, headaches, memory problems, job impairment, or motor vehicle crashes when treatment can be as simple as a visit to New York City dentist Dr. David Blaustein’s office just south of Midtown West? His gentle, noninvasive treatment for snoring and breathing obstruction is a welcome alternative to surgery. Best of all, most medical insurance providers cover the cost of oral appliance therapy, so you don’t have to worry about whether or not you can afford the treatment.
Dr. Blaustein has been a trusted choice for oral appliance therapy in NYC for over 20 years.
Do you have sleep apnea?
Approximately 18 million Americans experience the symptoms of sleep apnea.
Symptoms of sleep apnea may include:
- Dry mouth in the mornings
- Sore throats
- Morning headaches
- Excessive snoring
- Choking or gasping during sleep
- Daytime sleepiness
You may be more at risk for developing sleep apnea if you are male, overweight, smoke, and are over the age of 40, although sleep apnea can affect anyone – even children. To test for sleep apnea, your primary physician may recommend you participate in an overnight Nocturnal Polysomnography test where equipment monitors your lung, heart, brain activity, breathing patterns, arm and leg movements, and blood oxygen levels as you sleep.
Home tests like AccuSom may be an alternative option if you don’t like the idea of visiting a sleep lab.
How can dentists treat sleep apnea?
There are two main treatments for sleep apnea – oral appliance therapy from a dentist or a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) treatment from a sleep specialist. There are many drawbacks to the CPAP machine. Users complain of waking with dry mouth and dry throat, discomfort from wearing the mask all night long, and trouble drifting to sleep amid the loud sound of the machine.
CPAP can be difficult for travelers and there is routine maintenance involved.
Alternative to CPAP
By contrast, oral appliance therapy is easy, affordable, and more comfortable. This treatment has been endorsed by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. A review of research published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine (November 2014 issue) found oral appliance therapy to benefit two-thirds of all obstructive sleep apnea patients.
Instead of wearing the bulky CPAP mask, you will place a small custom mouthguard-type appliance in your mouth as you sleep. The appliance repositions jaw and tongue to improve airflow and enable a more relaxing, restorative night’s rest. It takes some adjustment and commitment initially, but most patients find that they are able to use the appliance all night long without incident.
At our office in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City, Dr. David Blaustein and his team will conduct an oral exam, take x-rays, and discuss oral appliance therapy in greater detail with you. Most people are good candidates for the oral appliance, with rare exceptions for advanced periodontal disease or underlying jaw problems.
Dr. Blaustein will take impressions of your teeth and create the custom-made mouthpiece in office. Small adjustments may be required to create the perfect fit. A follow-up sleep test within a few weeks of using the device is usually recommended to test for efficiency.