Sleep Apnea

Kevin Ortale DDS

Family & Cosmetic Dentistry located in Phoenix, AZ

Loud snoring is more than just a nuisance, it can also be potentially dangerous. Kevin Ortale, DDS, and his highly experienced team are available to determine whether you have sleep apnea, a serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts again throughout the night. To learn more about the impacts of sleep apnea, call the office in Phoenix, Arizona, or book an appointment online today.

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that affects approximately 22 million Americans. It occurs when you repeatedly stop and start breathing throughout the night. The disorder carries serious side effects because breathing problems during the night put patients at risk of heart attack, abnormal heartbeat, and stroke.

Are there different types of sleep apnea?

There are three main types of sleep apnea that can impact your sleep quality and overall health:

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)

OSA is the most common type of sleep apnea. The disorder occurs when the soft tissues and muscles in the back of your throat relax and collapse during sleep, blocking your airways.

Central sleep apnea

Central sleep apnea is not caused by a blockage in your throat, but rather the signals in your brain. When your brain fails to send the proper signals to the muscles that control breathing during sleep, you may experience bouts of breathing troubles. Central sleep apnea is typically triggered by another condition, such as a brain infection, stroke, severe obesity, and certain medications.

Complex sleep apnea

Complex sleep apnea happens when a patient has both OSA and central sleep apnea.

Which sleep apnea symptoms should I watch out for?

Many sleep apnea patients are completely unaware of their sleep apnea until a partner or roommate points out their very loud snoring. However, the most common sleep apnea warning signs to look out for include:

  • Very loud snoring
  • Sore throat in the morning
  • Extreme daytime fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Morning headaches
  • Sudden irritability
  • Gasping for air in the middle of the night
  • Insomnia

Sleep apnea often impacts your ability to stay awake and concentrate during the day, so it’s important to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ortale right away if you experience any of the above symptoms.

What are my sleep apnea treatment options?

The right sleep apnea treatment for you depends entirely on the severity of your case. There are many innovative treatments available, such as:

>Dental device

Dr. Ortale is a SomnoMed® Certified Provider. SomnoMed is an oral appliance that fits comfortably over your teeth during sleep to prevent teeth grinding and gently push your jaw forward. It is designed specifically for patients with obstructive sleep apnea, as the appliance helps prevent the soft tissues and muscles in the back of your throat from collapsing during sleep.

CPAP device

A continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine is a mask that fits over your mouth and nose during the night. It’s connected to a machine that continuously flows air through your lungs, ensuring that you physically cannot stop breathing during the night. The device is a highly effective sleep apnea treatment.

When left untreated, sleep apnea often worsens over time, impacting your sleep quality as well as your partner’s. For the best sleep apnea relief, call Kevin Ortale, DDS, PLC, or book an appointment online today.