Sleep Apnea Treatment

Sleep Apnea treatment in Suwanee

Help for Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Snoring

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a potentially serious disorder that disrupts a person’s sleep, often without his or her awareness. In addition to excessive daytime sleepiness, studies show that people who suffer from OSA are much more likely to suffer from heart problems (heart attack, congestive heart failure, hypertension), strokes and have a higher incidence of work-related and driving-related accidents.

Dr. Robert Finkel is specially trained to treat OSA and snoring disorders and is a recognized authority in sleep medicine in Atlanta. As one of the charter members of the Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, he has been providing help to patients suffering from sleep disorders for more than 33 years. He lectured extensively, nationally and internationally, on dental sleep medicine and treatment using oral devices.

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Sleep Apnea Dentist in Suwanee

Obstructive Sleep Apnea is caused by the relaxation of your throat muscles, and your tongue falls back and blocks the airway. Image used courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.

The most common type of sleep apnea, Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), is characterized by pauses in breathing for ten seconds or more during sleep. Apnea is a Greek word meaning “without air.”

During sleep, the body’s muscles relax causing the soft tissues of the airway to collapse and obstruct the airway. The body reacts to this obstruction by interrupting the sleep pattern enough to start breathing again, which is frequently accompanied by a loud gasp. The pauses last for several seconds and can occur up to 30 times an hour while asleep.

Although you may not notice the disruptions in your breathing, they result in a transition from restful, deep sleep to a light sleep that isn’t sufficient to function normally, leaving you very sleepy during the day. Other symptoms include snoring loudly, a morning headache and dry mouth.

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Sleep Apnea Dentist in Suwanee

Daytime Sleepiness, Trouble Concentrating, Snoring

Sleep Consultation Special $89

Dr. Finkel will conduct a Sleep Consultation to check for symptoms of sleep apnea. If you have any of the common symptoms associated with OSA, we will arrange for you to take a sleep test with a local physician. If you are diagnosed with OSA, Dr. Finkel will provide options for treatment.

  • Sleep Evaluation with Oral Exam

  • Epworth Sleepiness Scale

  • CPAP vs. Oral Appliance---what is right for you?

  • Consultation for Insurance Coverage

Call us at (770) 212-9691 to make an appointment or request an appointment online.

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

The most common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea that you may notice include:

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Impaired concentration
  • Morning headaches
  • Snoring
  • Memory loss
  • Irritability
  • Decreased sex drive

Symptoms of sleep apnea that others may notice about you

  • Episodes of not breathing (apnea), which may occur as few as 5 times an hour (mild apnea) to more than 50 times an hour (severe apnea).
  • Loud snoring. Almost all people who have sleep apnea snore, but not all people who snore have sleep apnea.
  • Restless tossing and turning during sleep.
  • Nighttime choking or gasping spells.

Severe health problems linked to sleep apnea

When breathing pauses repeatedly during sleep, oxygen deprivation occurs and can cause other health issues such as those listed below.

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Weight gain

Lack of refreshing sleep can cause drowsiness during the day, and nearly one in five automobile accidents involving serious injury have been attributed to a driver being sleepy while behind the wheel.

Online Sleep Apnea Tests

Take these simple tests to see if you are at risk from sleep apnea.

Treatment Options

Good bedtime habits, weight loss and exercise are excellent measures that you can take to help prevent OSA and snoring. If appropriate, Dr. Finkel may also suggest Continuous Positive Airway Pressure or Oral Appliance Therapy to help with your condition.

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)

Sleep Apnea Dentist in Suwanee

A CPAP machine generates pressurized air to help keep your airway open during sleep.

CPAP is pressurized air generated from a bedside machine. The air is delivered through a tube that is connected to a mask that covers the nose. The force of the pressurized air slants the airway open. The CPAP opens the airway like air into a balloon; when air is blown into the balloon, it opens and gets wider. This is how CPAP clears the airway.

Oral Appliance Therapy

Sleep Apnea Dentist in Suwanee

Customized oral appliances are designed to reposition your lower jaw and tongue to allow for unobstructed airflow.

Dr. Finkel also uses noninvasive oral appliance therapy to help patients suffering from obstructive sleep apnea disorder. Oral appliances that are customized to fit your mouth precisely are worn during sleep and are similar to orthodontic retainers or sports mouth guards. Oral appliances are designed to move your lower jaw forward, and open your bite to allow for less restricted airflow during sleep.

There are many different oral appliances available. Approximately 60 appliances have been approved through the FDA for treatment of snoring and/or Obstructive Sleep Apnea.

Oral Appliances work in several ways:

  • Repositioning the lower jaw, tongue, soft palate and uvula
  • Stabilizing the lower jaw and tongue
  • Increasing the muscle tone of the tongue

Dr. Finkel has significant advanced training and experience in the use of Oral Appliance Therapy. He is one of few dentists to use a rhinometer and acoustic pharongometer to measure the patient's airway. This is a highly useful tool for determining the proper position for oral sleep appliances. He is familiar with the various designs of appliances and can determine which one is best suited for your needs. He will work with your physician as part of the medical team in your diagnosis, treatment and on-going care.

Silence Your Snoring!

Snoring is the sound of obstructed airways during sleep. When the soft tissues at the rear of the throat lean against the back of the throat they vibrate and cause the sound of snoring.

In most cases snoring is not a condition that threatens your overall health. However, about 5% - 10% of people who snore loudly have sleep apnea. Take one of our online tests to see if you are at risk. Snoring can be easily treated with a custom-fitted oral appliance that is worn at night to keep your airways.

Read more about Oral Appliance Therapy.

Call us at (770) 212-9691 to request a consultation  or request a consultation online.