How Sleep Apnea Can Affect Your Oral Health
Sleep apnea is a disorder in which a person may stop breathing for short intervals of time while sleeping. People with this condition often wake up feeling tired and unable to focus. But, did you know that sleep apnea can also have some serious consequences for your oral health in Dallas, TX?
When left untreated, sleep apnea can cause damage to the teeth and gums. If you're dealing with this problem or if someone in your family is showing symptoms of sleep apnea, contact Dr. Salvator La Mastra at Hamlett & La Mastra, DDS in Dallas, TX. Our dental clinic can offer comfortable, effective solutions.
What is sleep apnea?
A sleep disorder can interfere with your health in many ways, including your oral health. With sleep apnea, the airways become blocked or narrowed. This means that breathing becomes more difficult, affecting how well you get restorative sleep.
Sleep apnea can cause you to wake up many times during the night. As a result, you probably feel very tired throughout the day and have trouble focusing or keeping your attention on work or personal activities. You could also suffer from low energy levels, which could lead to additional health problems.
The following are common symptoms of sleep apnea:
- Loud snoring
- Gasping for air during sleep
- Chronic fatigue after sleeping
- Restlessness and irritability
- Dry mouth upon waking
How does sleep apnea relate to oral health?
If you have sleep apnea, your oral health could suffer in several ways. Chronic dry mouth, for example, leads to uncontrolled bacteria growth. You become more vulnerable to tooth decay, plaque, mouth sores, and gum disease. This is because saliva production is necessary for keeping your mouth clean and healthy.
Sleep apnea is also related to teeth grinding, or bruxism. When you clench or grind your teeth at night, this can be very rough on your teeth. You may frequently wake up with a headache and sore jaws, cheeks, and neck. Over time, teeth grinding can also damage your tooth enamel, meaning you may need additional dental work.
How can a dentist help with sleep apnea?
Luckily, there are solutions to avoid the problems related to sleep apnea. While sleep apnea treatments may include a CPAP machine, these appliances can be disruptive and require a lot of upkeep. At Hamlett & La Mastra, DDS, we offer several conservative snoring treatments, including mouthpieces, which can help you with your snoring issue so you can get a good night’s rest.
Oral appliances are made to fit your mouth, so you can enjoy peaceful rest without worry. And, unlike CPAP machines, they don't require electricity or masks. They easily travel with you to improve your sleeping experience when you're on the road, too.
Comfortable and effective sleep apnea treatment in Dallas, TX
If you or a loved one has oral health issues, it may be time to talk with a dentist about sleep apnea. Whether you are diagnosed with mild or severe obstruction of the airways while sleeping, Dr. Salvator La Mastra can walk you through sleep apnea treatment options that don’t require a CPAP machine. Allow the professionals Hamlett & La Mastra, DDS to help with teeth grinding and more. Contact us in Dallas, TX today to get started.