Snoring—Sleep Apnea in San Marcos
Snoring can irritate those around you at night and keep them up, but that may be the least of your worries. Snoring can cause health problems such as sleep apnea, which is where you stop breathing for random intervals and lengths of time while you’re asleep. Your airflow is blocked because your airway collapses, and it stays this way until you close your jaw, which returns your tongue and jaw to a natural position so you can resume breathing.
Snoring is not just an inconvenience for those sleeping near or next to you; it can cause real health problems, such as sleep apnea, which literally means you stop breathing during sleep for short periods of time. The airway collapses, blocking airflow into the lungs. This obstruction persists until the person unconsciously closes the jaw, returning the tongue and throat to a normal position. Dr. Molenda may be able to prevent snoring and sleep apnea with a custom-made snore guard.
Sleep apnea can cause:
- Chronic sleepiness
- Heart attack
- Morning headaches
- High blood pressure
To prevent sleep apnea, Dr. Molenda recommends a snore guard known as the Thornton Adjustable Positioner (TAP). The TAP is a snore guard that is intended to reduce or alleviate nighttime snoring and obstructive sleep apnea by using an upper tray that fits over the upper teeth and a lower tray that fits over the lower teeth. A hook mechanism attached to the upper tray hooks around a bar attached to the lower tray and positions the lower jaw forward, preventing the soft tissue of the throat from collapsing and obstructing the airway.
The Thornton Adjustable Positioner (TAP) is based on the same principle as cardiopulmonary resuscitation, CPR. The airway must be opened to allow air to pass through the throat. A constricted or collapsed airway causes snoring or sleep apnea.
Benefits of a snore guard include:
- Optimal positioning: the TAP holds the lower jaw in a forward position so that it does not fall open during the night and cause the airway to collapse.
- Improved breathing: The TAP maintains a clear airway to reduce snoring and allow constant air flow.
- Comfortable and patient friendly: The TAP is adjustable to allow maximum comfort and effectiveness.
- Custom-made: The TAP will form to the contours of your mouth to prevent changes in teeth position or mouth structures.
Call the dental office of Larry D. Molenda, DDS to schedule your sleep apnea/snore guard appointment. Dr. Molenda provides world-class dental care for residents of San Marcos, New Braunfels, Kyle, Wimberley, and beyond.