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What Does a Sleep Dentist Do?
A sleep dentist has some specialized skills and treatments. You may have never even heard of these professionals. However, one could provide much-needed assistance if you are having trouble resting soundly at night due to various oral issues. No one should have to endure the frustrations that come from poor sleeping. You should visit with a dentist that focuses on sleep to help you enjoy your precious slumbers again.
Problems that can affect sleeping
Rough nights for sleep are not uncommon for many people. Stress, anxiety and illness can keep anyone from dozing off. There are also some other conditions that arise from oral issues that cause sleepless nights. Snoring, which occurs when a person cannot freely move air through the mouth or nose, can keep people up at night and in the early morning. Another concern is sleep apnea, which occurs when a person has breathing pauses during the night because of airflow blockages.
A sleep dentist can identify snoring and sleep apnea
While some people may think of a doctor when it comes to helping with breathing problems, dentists work in this area as well. Patients who snore or struggle to breathe at night should speak with a qualified dentist. The dentist will then evaluate the patient thoroughly and will take X-rays of the mouth and give an examination of the teeth, gums and tongue. At this point, the staff will determine whether treatment makes sense and what route the patient should go.
Gets the patient an oral appliance
After concluding that a person’s breathing struggles are contributing to a poor night’s sleep, the sleep dentist will consider fitting the patient with an oral appliance such as a mouthguard. First, the dentist will take impressions of the person’s teeth. Then the model will be sent to a lab, where a technician will make the appliance. The dentist will make sure the device fits properly. So, there may be a few different adjustments until the patient feels comfortable. The dentist may even work with other professionals to set up a sleep study for the patient to see whether the appliance is working as planned.
At this point, the dentist will not simply turn the patient loose and hope all goes well. The staff will follow up with the person to answer questions and discuss concerns. This gives both the patient and dentist the opportunity to evaluate how effective the appliance is and whether it is making a difference at night. The dentist may even try a different type of mouthguard if the first one appears to be the wrong fit.
There is hope
Living with sleep apnea or chronic snoring can disrupt sleep for both the affected person and for partners or other members of the household. If you want to put an end to being tired all of the time, call a sleep dentist. Thankfully, help is available. Make an appointment and breathe easy once again.
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