Sleep Dentistry

“Stop snoring. The importance of a good rest”

  • It improves your sleep rest and allows sleeping to those around you.
  • It increases the ability to concentrate during the day.
  • It extends life by improving health.

The apnea/hypopnea syndrome

The apnea/hypopnea syndrome (OSAHS) is, along with insomnia, one of the most frequent nocturnal disorders, affecting between 4-6% of the population. It consists of repetitive occurrence of breathing pauses during sleep that are manifested by a discontinuous breath associated with snoring, and the presence of short stoppages of breathing (apnea).

Snoring and apnea are frequently associated and patients do not perceive them, although they eventually cause a split and unrefreshing sleep, which usually triggers the onset of daytime tiredness and drowsiness. Likewise, the lack of proper breathing is usually associated with low oxygen levels in the blood, which will eventually cause hypertension, ischemic heart disease, cardiac arrhythmias, or strokes.

Likewise, the lack of proper breathing is usually associated with low oxygen levels in the blood, which will eventually cause hypertension, ischemic heart disease, cardiac arrhythmias, or strokes:

  • Obesity, overweight, advanced age and male sex are the main risk factors.
  • Advanced age and male sex.
  • Tobacco, alcohol and sedatives, due to their depressant action on the respiratory system.
  • Postural factors, like sleeping on your back.
  • Anatomical and/or metabolic changes.

Typically, the symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea appear gradually and worsen over the years, causing the following symptoms:

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness or drowsiness. Chronic fatigue.
  • Loud snoring accompanied by discontinuous breath and choking which interrupt sleep: nighttime awakenings are accompanied by body movements.
  • Lack of concentration and memory loss.
  • Morning headache and irritability.

The treatment for mild and moderate cases is the MAD (mandibular advancement device). This device causes an increased airflow through the airways.

Occlusion Bruxism

Another disorder which may impact rest is the so-called bruxism. If you wake up with a diffuse headache or with dental sensitivity you may belong to the group of people who clench their teeth at night.

Since this usually happens while sleeping, most people will not be aware of it.

Bruxism may cause problems both directly and indirectly. Teeth may ache and even move. People who grind laterally wear their teeth away thus rendering flat surfaces and unsupported enamel areas, which break easily.

There are many emotional and physical factors which contribute to develop this neuromuscular activity, e. g., stress, sleep disorders, unstable bites, badly positioned or lacking teeth.

An effective therapy consists of using a dental protector called “night splint” or “bite splint”. This protector avoids the contact between upper and lower teeth during the night bruxism periods.

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