Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is the most common type of sleep apnea. It is a potentially serious sleep-related breathing disorder characterized by the frequent decrease or complete halt in airflow even as you attempt to breath.
Some pauses can last one minute or longer. This pattern can occur dozens or even hundreds of times in a single night, depriving your brain and other tissues of oxygen, and leading to various problems.
If you suspect that you have sleep apnea, a sleep specialist may recommend an overnight sleep study at a sleep center or lab for proper diagnosis by charting vital signs such as breathing, heartbeat, and brain waves.
Following a diagnosis of sleep apnea, the sleep specialist may recommend one or more of the following treatments:
1. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP)
This is the standard treatment option for moderate to severe cases of OSA, and a good option for mild sleep apnea. The treatment provides the patient with a steady stream of pressurized air via a mask that you wear during sleep, in order to keep the airway open. The continuous airflow prevents pauses in breathing, so you maintain normal oxygen levels all night.
2. Position Therapy
For patients suffering from mild cases of sleep apnea, the sleep specialist may recommend that you make some adjustments in your sleeping position to prevent you from sleeping on your back, which is believed to cause breathing pauses. You may also use a pillow to raise your head and encourage sleeping in a side position.
3. Oral appliances
Sleep specialists recommend the use of dental appliances, effectively managing mild to moderate cases of sleep apnea.
Treating sleep apnea can improve your quality of life
There are other treatment options for sleep apnea. If you're concerned about sleep apnea or another sleep disorder, please visit Santa Ana Magic Smile in Santa Ana, 92706 to discuss your options with a sleep specialist. Call us at 714-835-6677 to schedule your appointment.