Dental Sleep Medicine in Manasquan, NJ


Diagnosis and Treatment of Sleep Apnea

Are you drowsy during the day with no explanation? Do you snore loudly or wake up breathless in the middle of the night? If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, you may be one of more than 12 million Americans who are affected by sleep apnea. Dr. Barba is experienced in various forms of dental sleep medicine and will request you make an appointment to talk about your symptoms while receiving quality sleep apnea treatment in Manasquan, NJ.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a condition in which your breathing stops periodically during sleep, as many as 20 – 30 times per hour. Each time you stop breathing, the resulting lack of oxygen alerts your brain, which temporarily wakes you up to restart proper breathing. Since the time spent awake is so brief, most people with sleep apnea don’t remember it, and many believe they are getting a good night’s sleep when they are not. The constant wake-sleep, wake-sleep cycle prevents those with sleep apnea from achieving deep sleep. This results in a constant drowsy feeling during the day.


What Are the Signs of Sleep Apnea?

The following symptoms can indicate the presence of sleep apnea. If you notice one or more of these, contact our practice for your dental sleep apnea treatment:

Are There Different Types of Sleep Apnea?

There are three categories of sleep apnea. The most common is called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and occurs due to a physical blockage, usually the collapsing of the soft tissue in the back of the throat. Less common is central sleep apnea (CSA), when breathing stops because the muscles involved don’t receive the proper signal from the brain. And some people suffer from “mixed” or “complex” sleep apnea, which is a combination of obstructive and central.


What Are Risk Factors for Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea is more common in males than females and more common in older adults (40+) than younger adults and children. However, anyone, regardless of gender or age, can suffer from sleep apnea. Other risk factors include obesity, smoking, drinking, use of sedatives or tranquilizers, and family history. Central sleep apnea strikes most often in people with heart disorders, neuromuscular disorders, strokes, or brain tumors.

Is Sleep Apnea Dangerous?

Sleep apnea is considered a serious medical problem, and if left untreated it can lead to high blood pressure, increasing the risk of heart failure and stroke. The ongoing state of fatigue caused by sleep apnea can lead to problems at work or school, as well as danger when driving or operating heavy machinery. Sleep apnea can also cause complications with medication or surgery, because sedation by anesthesia can be risky, as can lying flat in bed after an operation. If you know or suspect you suffer from sleep apnea, let your family doctor know before taking prescribed medication or having surgery.


How Is Sleep Apnea Treated?

The type of treatment depends on the severity of each individual case as well as the type of apnea. Some solutions might include weight loss, smoking cessation, and sleep repositioning. Many patients are prescribed CPAP machines, which pumps a continuous stream of air into the patient’s nose or mouth throughout the night. However, many people find this uncomfortable and they stop wearing the mask. For mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea, Dr. Barba can provide an oral appliance used to position the mouth to prevent throat blockage. These have been successful for over 90% of the patients who use them and are an alternative to CPAP machines. Ask us about this treatment and start getting the rest you deserve.

What Should I Do If I Suspect Someone in My Family Suffers from Sleep Apnea?

Contact our Manasquan dental office and we can screen you for sleep apnea. This includes a visual examination by Dr. Barba and is routinely done with comprehensive oral evaluation and on a periodic basis with dental cleanings. We may recommend a sleep study and coordinate it for you to take an at-home sleep test. A team of specialists prescribe appropriate treatment. Depending on your situation, treatment may involve an oral device that we can create for you.


Call now or schedule online to discuss how Dr. Barba can help you with insomnia treatment.

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