Sleep apnea is a dangerous and under-diagnosed sleep problem that affects lots of people. If you think you are one of them, we can help you. Follow the advice below. If you have any questions or concerns (or would like to make an appointment), please feel free to contact our team. Your friends at 1st In Smiles, located in Plano, TX, would be happy to help you.
Step 1: Try Home Remedies
The first thing you may want to do if you are noticing signs of sleep apnea (such as snoring or interrupted sleep) is to try some tricks at home to improve the quality of your sleep. These tricks fall into two categories: bedtime adjustments and lifestyle changes. We will talk about both categories today.
- Sleep on your side
- Prop your head up
- Keep your nasal passages open using a nasal dilator, saline spray, or breathing strips
- Tighten your jaw muscles to keep your mouth closed while you sleep
- Lose excess weight
- Avoid alcohol, sleeping pills, or sedatives
- Quit smoking
- Exercise regularly
- Maintain a regular sleep schedule
If any of these tricks improve your sleep and you no longer need medical help, great! But if your snoring continues and you still are not getting the high quality sleep you deserve, it is time to take the next step: seeking medical help.
Step 2: Contact Our Office
When you contact our office for help with what you think may be sleep apnea, we will walk you through a process of diagnosis and then treatment.
Getting A Diagnosis
The first thing you have to do is be diagnosed with sleep apnea. This has to happen before we can prescribe a treatment. You will:
- Meet with a sleep specialist — Meeting with someone who is an expert in sleep disorders is the first step on your journey to treatment. We will help you get in touch with trusted professional.
- Undergo a sleep study — The next thing you will need to do is a sleep study. This is a test that allows the sleep specialist to understand what is going on when you sleep. Your snoring, breathing, and general activity will be recorded and assessed.
- Receive your diagnosis — You will then be diagnosed with sleep apnea, if applicable.
After you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, there are a few different treatment options that our team, in combination with the sleep specialist, can help you with:
- Sleep position adjustment — Although you may have tried this at home, professional advice on how to sleep may solve some of your sleep apnea or snoring problem. This is the simplest solution, but is not usually effective on its own.
- Oral appliances/night guard — These appliances are obtained through our office and are designed to help you breath better at night by adjusting your jaw to allow the airway to remain open. This treatment is sometimes suitable for use on its own but can also be used with other method of treatment. This option is great for patients who can’t tolerate a CPAP machine (see below).
- CPAP machine — This medical device pumps air into your passageways while you sleep in order to keep them open. This is an effective form of treatment. However, many patients have trouble adjusting to the mask you have to wear with it.
Our team will help you find the best treatment solution for you. Whether you need a simple position adjustment, an oral appliance, or a CPAP machine, we will be there to guide you.
Make An Appointment
Think you need helping with sleep apnea? No problem … give us a call. Just dial 972-905-9266 to talk with our team about how we can help you. You can also request an appointment using our online form.
Don’t suffer through sleep apnea. It can be dangerous! We look forward to helping you sleep easier!