Do Dentists Diagnose Sleep Apnea?

Do Dentists Diagnose Sleep Apnea?

Apr 15, 2022

This is a great question to ask — especially if you believe you may be suffering from the debilitating side effects of sleep apnea. First, let’s look at the causes, symptoms, and side effects of sleep apnea before delving into how our dentists at Great Neck Dental Associates can help you get a more restful and healthier night’s sleep.

Most Common Causes of Sleep Apnea

Although patients of all ages and genders can suffer from sleep apnea, it is most common in men. The American Sleep Association reports that 22% of men are impacted by the disorder worldwide, while only 17% of women are impacted. That said, sleep apnea has some prevalent causes that are not gender-specific. These include:

  • Enlarged soft palate
  • Jaw malformation
  • Nasal obstruction
  • Use of alcohol and sedatives
  • Smoking
  • Enlarged adenoids or tonsils
  • Head to neck size ratio
  • Obesity

Although many people may associate a diagnosis for sleep apnea with an overnight sleep study, several causes can be diagnosed with a dental exam. Our dentist in Great Neck, NY, can examine you to help rule out possible causes before undergoing a full-blown sleep study.

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

Did you know that patients who suffer from sleep apnea may exhibit symptoms besides the gold-standard symptom of snoring? If you experience any of the following symptoms, you may be suffering from a sleep disorder.

  • Morning headaches
  • Waking up with a dry throat or dry mouth
  • Unexplained mood changes
  • Lack of energy during the day
  • Night sweats
  • Forgetfulness
  • Depression and more

As with the common causes of sleep apnea, some of the disorder’s symptoms may also link to dentistry. Waking up with a dry throat or mouth may be a precursor to dental decay or gum disease. Likewise, morning headaches and lack of energy throughout the day could link to teeth grinding or dental infections. If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, you should consult a dentist.

Don’t Ignore the Symptoms

Some people do not think their snoring is cause for concern. The problem thinking that is that there are some dangerous side-effects of untreated sleep apnea, including:

  • Heart function
  • High blood pressure
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Metabolic syndrome disorders
  • Increased risk of accidents

The good news is that timely remedies can mitigate the dangerous side effects of the disorder. Our sleep apnea dentist in Great Neck, NY, use advanced technology to diagnose sleep apnea in the comfort of our office during daytime appointments. We can also refer patients for a sleep study if one is needed.

Oral Appliance Therapy for Sleep Apnea

Oral appliances can help with minimizing the effects of sleep apnea. They reposition your jaw and tongue to keep your airway open while you sleep. To ensure maximum comfort, you should get a customized appliance from your dentist versus buying a generic over-the-counter one. If you’re concerned about the cost of oral appliance therapy, most health insurance providers and Medicare cover these.

Call Now Schedule Now
Translate »