If you don’t snore yourself, you will know somebody who does. An estimated one in four people in England snore so, to many, it may seem like a very routine behaviour – a bit of a joke, even. But to many others, snoring and obstructive sleep apnoea – and the disruptive effect it can have on one’s own sleep, never mind that of a partner’s – is not so easily dismissed as a trivial habit. Indeed, untreated sleep apnoea is linked to many potentially serious medical conditions. Sleep medicine techniques practised by a dentist specialising in this field can be the answer to snoring and sleep apnoea.
What is obstructive sleep apnoea?
OSA is a condition where the walls of the throat relax and narrow, interrupting normal breathing. The brain then responds to the lack of oxygen by pulling you out of deep sleep, either to a light sleep or to wakefulness. This happens repeatedly through the night. Snoring, laboured breath and gasping are all signs of sleep apnoea.
What can be done?
If your snoring is having an adverse effect on your life – hampering your concentration levels, for example, or causing friction with your partner – you should make an appointment with your GP. They will, in the first instance, most probably suggest a series of lifestyle changes such as losing weight and cutting down on alcohol and smoking. A specialist dental practice can also help. There are several dental appliances on the market designed to improve your ability to breathe by modifying the position of your lower jaw during sleep.
At our central London specialist dental practice we bring together dentistry experts; Dr Aditi Desai is a specialist in sleep disorders and has helped many London patients achieve a sounder night’s sleep. After a detailed examination, Dr Desai will advise you on an appropriate appliance and you will discuss every aspect of the treatment in full. There are various factors affecting the success rate but, where simple snoring is concerned, these appliances are reported to have a 90% success rate.