What is sleep apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the temporary stoppage of breathing during sleep, often resulting in daytime sleepiness. It is caused by a blockage of the airway, usually when the soft tissue in the rear of the throat collapses and closes during sleep. With each apnea event, the brain briefly awakens the person with sleep apnea in order to resume breathing, but consequently sleep is extremely fragmented and of poor quality.
If left untreated, OSA can cause daytime sleepiness, poor sleep quality, high blood pressure, increased blood sugar levels (as in diabetes), heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, depression, memory problems, sexual difficulties, weight gain and headaches. Moreover, untreated sleep apnea may be responsible for job impairment and motor vehicle crashes. Fortunately, sleep apnea can be diagnosed and treated.
Dr. Scholl is specially trained to diagnose and treat sleep apnea. She can fabricate oral sleep appliances that patients wear during the night to help them inhale and exhale more air per breath, which in turn reduces a patients snoring and sleep apnea. If a person with OSA has tried to use a CPAP (a device for sleep apnea) but found it to be intolerable, the oral appliance may be the solution. Please call or email us to schedule a consultation with Dr. Scholl at no cost to you.
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