Get Effective Sleep Apnea Treatments at Medico M.D., your Sleep Apnea Experts in Dallas, Fort Worth, Waco and San Antonio.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a sleep-related breathing disorder that involves a decrease or complete halt in airflow despite an ongoing effort to breath. It occurs when the muscles relax during sleep, causing soft tissues in the back of the throat to collapse and block the upper airway. This leads to partial reductions (hypopneas) and complete pauses (apneas) in breathing during sleep.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when patients stop breathing for ten or more seconds at a time during sleep. There are two forms of sleep apnea that relate to the underlying cause of this condition. Central sleep apnea (CSA) occurs when a patient’s brain fails to trigger the body to inhale and exhale at regular intervals during sleep. Some patients with CSA can receive CPAP treatment that effectively improves their sleep, but this disorder can be extremely dangerous unless properly treated. Most patients are referred to specialists in sleep medicine, neurology, and/or surgery to ensure they receive proper treatment. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is much more common and easier to treat. It occurs when a physical blockage in the airway prevents patients from breathing in and out during sleep. This is the form of sleep apnea we help patients with at Medico M.D.
Am I Suffering from Sleep Apnea?
To know for sure that you’re suffering from sleep apnea, you’ll need to schedule an appointment to undergo a sleep study. However, patients should be aware of the common warning signs of this disorder as it is so often misdiagnosed, this is especially true for those patients who are over the age of 50, male, have a BMI greater than 35 kg/m2, have a neck circumference greater than 16 inches, or have family history of sleep apnea. You may want to consider contacting us for sleep apnea diagnosis if you notice any of the following warning signs:
- Snoring, especially if it’s loud and happens nightly
- Waking yourself by gasping, wheezing, choking, or snorting
- Morning headaches, migraines, ringing in the ears, or earaches
- Dry mouth, hoarse voice, or lost voice upon waking
- Severe daytime tiredness even after receiving adequate sleep
- Difficulty concentrating or keeping track of details
- Changes in mood or behavior
How is Sleep Apnea Treated?
Sleep apnea is typically treated in one of three ways. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) keeps the airway clear by forcing air through the throat and into the lungs. Oral appliances can be custom crafted to shift the jaw forward. This places pressure on the throat to keep the airway clear during sleep. Many patients achieve adequate relief from sleep apnea with one or the other of these two treatments, but others will need combined CPAP and oral appliance therapy to adequately improve their quantity and quality of sleep. We will work with you to select the best treatments to meet your needs.
For your convenience, we offer a FREE no-obligation consultation.
Since most of the symptoms of sleep apnea can only be identified during your sleep, the doctor may prescribe an at-home sleep test.
Our sleep tests are inexpensive, covered by most insurance companies, and interpreted by board certified sleep physicians. Test results will be reviewed in person during your next appointment.
Treatment Options for OSA
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) is a machine that uses a steady stream of air to keep your airway open throughout the night so you are able to breathe. Masks and machines may vary depending on your treatment.
Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT) is a device that fits in your mouth over your teeth. It may resemble a sports mouth guard. The device prevents the airway from collapsing by holding your jaw forward, thus enlarging the upper airway.
Treatment Options For OSA
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)
This is a machine that uses a steady stream of air to keep your airway open throughout the night so you are able to breathe. Masks and machines may vary depending on your treatment.
Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT)
An oral appliance is a device that fits in your mouth over your teeth. It may resemble a sports mouth guard. The device prevents the airway from collapsing by holding your jaw forward thus enlarging the upper airway.