Sleep Apnea/ Snoring

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a potentially life threatening condition that is more common than generally recognized. An apnea is when breathing stops for 10 seconds or more while you are asleep. Snoring is often associated with OSA, although not everyone who snores has this condition.

Traditionally, sleep disorders were diagnosed and treated only by primary care physicians, ENT's, pulmonologists & neurologists. Recently, the dental profession has begun to recognize the role they can play in early detection and treatment of OSA. Modern technology makes it practical for dentists trained in dental sleep medicine and physicians trained in traditional sleep medicine to treat patients in close collaboration with one another. However, an accurate diagnosis can only be achieved through the efforts of properly trained practitioners.

Common symptoms are:

  • Loud snoring
  • Depression
  • Heartburn
  • Increased sexual dysfunction
  • Waking up with headaches
  • Frequent trips to the bathroom during the night
  • Waking up with a choking sensation
  • Restless sleep, tossing and turning
  • Perspiring excessively at night
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Always tired & having trouble concentrating
  • Dry mouth upon awakening
  • or staying awake

  • While these symptoms by themselves may seem common and little cause for concern, if left untreated, sleep disorders can lead to heart attacks, strokes and even death!

    To fully understand many sleep-related problems, an overnight sleep study is needed. During the study, we monitor activity of the sympathetic nervous system and body systems such as breathing, heart rate, body movements and body position, and snoring. Problems that can be diagnosed from an overnight sleep study include sleep apnea, snoring, REM related problems, bruxism and different behavioral changes.

    Unlike many other tests that you have to do in a hospital or sleep laboratory, the Watch-PAT is an easy take home sleep test that allows you to sleep in your own bed and get the results in less than 24hrs. This compact device fits easily on a Velcro armband with 2 finger sensors and body sensor attached. You then press the button and go to sleep.

    For more information, you can go to: (american academy of dental sleep medicine)