Sleep is just as important as optimum nutrition for the body. It helps the tissues of the body relax and gain energy during the process. However, not all of us are lucky enough to have uninterrupted high-quality sleep, during which we explore the more profound sleep stage. Hence, we would like to offer the perfect solution to such disorders by conducting a thorough diagnosis and suggesting sleep appliances to help you cope with the condition.
What is a sleep study?
A sleep study is a non-invasive and comprehensive overnight exam that allows the dentist to monitor your body and brain functions while you sleep. We use an EEG to monitor your sleep, which records various stages of sleep along with your REM and NREM sleep. It helps us identify possible interruptions during sleep by diagnosing your eye movement, blood oxygen levels, body movements, snoring, heart rate, etc.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a disorder that affects your breathing pattern while asleep. It is characterized by a partial or complete blockage of the airway due to the collapse of tissues from the roof of the throat. In a few cases of sleep apnea, the brain fails to signal the muscles of the lungs to inhale air, due to which you could be deprived of oxygen. Most patients who have sleep apnea experience short pauses in breathing, waking up with a jolt due to the inability to breathe, etc.
What are its symptoms?
- Persistent headache
- Bruxism or night-time teeth grinding
- Dozing off during the day
- Reduced quality of sleep
- TMJ disorder
- Soreness in the throat due to snoring
- Inadequate supply of oxygen to the body
What are sleep appliances?
Sleep appliances are customized solutions for common sleep disorders such as bruxism, snoring, sleep apnea, etc. Some of the commonly suggested sleep appliances are:
Bruxism guard: A bruxism guard or a nightguard is an oral appliance that looks similar to an athletic mouthguard. Patients have to wear it before going to sleep, and the guard prevents contact between the teeth from either jaw. It also reduces the pressure applied to the TMJ, thereby reducing the chances of developing TMJ disorder.
Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD): It is a simple, customized appliance which, as the name suggests, brings the lower jaw forward to widen the opening to the airway. It also keeps the roof of the throat from collapsing, thus avoiding sleep apnea.
CPAP device: A CPAP or Continuous Positive Airway Pressure device is connected to a pressurized oxygen cylinder. At the other end, a face mask will be provided, which the patient has to place over their mouth and nose before going to sleep. The device continuously supplies oxygen and maintains a positive pressure in the airway, which avoids its blockage.