How your Chesterland, OH dentist treats bruxism, snoring with sleep appliances
At Chesterland Family Dental Care, we treat the young of age and the young at heart alike. Patients of all ages can suffer from sleep disorders. Conditions such as sleep-disordered breathing have consequences for both oral and overall health. Led by Dr. Brianne (“Dr. Bri”) Fratantonio, our team restores you or a loved one’s quality of life with custom sleep appliances in Chesterland, OH.
Common sleep problems
Many of us snore occasionally, which is normal. Allergies and nasal congestion can be to blame. These and other conditions narrow the airway. As you breathe, the air may vibrate against tissues. This vibration produces that characteristic “snore” sound. “Simple” snoring (with no underlying cause) is not harmful. But chronic or habitual snoring can put considerable strain on relationships, as it affects your spouse’s or partner’s ability to get quality, restorative sleep.
If snoring is accompanied by moments of interrupted breathing and a characteristic snort or gasp, you may have Obstructive Sleep Apnea. OSA is a serious medical condition. The tissues in the throat may become so relaxed that they block the air from moving through your airway during sleep. In an effort to breathe, your panicked brain sends a signal to jerk the body awake. Apneic patients’ breathing may be interrupted dozens of times each hour.
Individuals with such sleep-disordered breathing are at elevated risk of developing hypertension and other heart problems, as well as conditions like diabetes. Adults with sleep apnea tend to experience daytime fatigue, whereas children may “act out” or be hyper due to chronic sleeplessness.
Bruxism is another condition that we treat frequently, and that often arises during sleep. Bruxers grind their teeth and clench their jaws when at rest. The excessive force that is generated can damage natural teeth and shorten the lifespan of restorations. Children may develop bruxism as soon as their teeth erupt, which can interfere with healthy oral development. Bruxism is also associated with TMJ Disorder symptoms, as it can stress the jaw joints.
Oral appliance therapy
There are hundreds of different types of oral appliances on the market today; however, appliances designed at Chesterland Family Dental Care are one of a kind. Each device is made to fit the contours of your mouth. They slip into your mouth and fit snugly over your teeth. Depending on your needs, a nightguard may be worn during sleep to protect your teeth from damage caused by bruxing. Nightguards also alleviate the pressure placed on your jaws, easing TMJ pain.
If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, an oral appliance will be fitted to reposition your jaw or depress your tongue. In this manner, the tissues are stabilized. So, when you relax, they don’t block the airway. Snore guards work similarly, holding overly lax tissues in place when you sleep.
Our patients generally adjust to these appliances easily. They are compact and may be carried in a bag or pocket when you travel. They are also easy to care for with non-alcohol-based cleansers and warm (not hot) water. Treatment starts with an evaluation at our Chesterland, OH office, serving Hunting Valley, Gates Mills, Chardon, Munson, Kirtland, Russell, Chagrin Falls, Novelty, Mayfield, and the surrounding area. Call (440) 491-4001 to schedule your appointment.