When Does the Dentist Recommend Sleep Apnea Surgery?

April 23, 2019

We’ve talked about how we often treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) using a custom-made oral appliance. But what if you require more than an oral appliance? For some patients in Olathe, KS, we may instead address sleep apnea using oral surgery. When does a dentist recommend sleep apnea surgery? What should patients expect from this procedure?

When to Seek Treatment

How do you know if you have sleep apnea? People with this common sleep disorder often report snoring, trouble going to sleep or waking up, frequent episodes of waking in the night, sometimes even gasping for air or choking. Headaches, dry mouth, moodiness, and daytime drowsiness also occur. With OSA, the soft tissues in the back of your mouth and in your throat become too relaxed as you rest. They subsequently collapse and block air passages. You actually stop breathing until the brain wakes you, a process you may not remember but that could happen hundreds of times a night. Without treatment, over time OSA could lead to strains on your immune system, depression, and cardiovascular concerns, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and even heart attack.

The Surgical Procedure

Often, we treat the issue with a custom oral appliance, a unique device that is worn like a mouthguard as you rest. The appliance then moves the jaw to keep airways open. We also have the CPAP machine. With the CPAP device, each night you wear a special mask over your nose and mouth. A hose connects the mask to a machine, which pumps air to ensure open and uninterrupted breathing.

However, in some cases this may not be enough. For complex situations, we may suggest a special surgery. With this option, we will trim excess tissues in the throat and mouth, which prevents them from blocking airflow as you sleep. Afterward, you will no longer require an oral appliance or a CPAP machine to enjoy a good night’s rest.

Ensuring Your Comfort

Prior to your procedure, we will happily discuss your surgery and answer any questions you may have. We will work with a trained anesthesiologist to administer sedation, ensuring you remain calm and comfortable with no memory of the procedure. We will also schedule follow-up visits and offer detailed instructions to ensure a fast healing process with a reduced risk of complications. If you have questions about treating sleep disorders, then contact our team today.

Do You Have Questions About Treating Sleep Disorders?

We have a number of options to help improve sleep and overall health. For more information on our OSA surgery, schedule a consultation by calling E-Care Dentistry, PA in Olathe, KS, today at 913-210-1701. We also proudly serve patients from Lenexa, Leawood, Gardner, and all surrounding communities.