Does intense snoring jolt you awake in the middle of the night? Do you consistently wake up with a morning headache? Sleep apnea isn’t just a nuisance at night — it can affect how you feel in the morning, your ability to think clearly at work, and even your heart health.
Thankfully, sleep apnea can be managed. At Airport Dental Care in Austin, Texas, Dr. Brian LaBombard treats sleep apnea with a custom-made night guard. If you’re affected by the symptoms of sleep apnea, please call us so that we can help you get the good night’s sleep you deserve.
In the meantime, continue reading to explore how a night guard can benefit you.
What is sleep apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that causes your airways to become temporarily blocked, or obstructed. This is why the symptoms of sleep apnea are intensified when you sleep flat on your back.
This can lead to:
- Gasping for air in the night
- Increased nighttime trips to the bathroom
- Intense snoring
- Morning headaches
Sleep apnea can also cause jaw pain if you clench your jaw (bruxism) while you sleep.
What causes sleep apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea is just one type of sleep apnea. The obstruction often occurs when your tongue or other tissues drift back while you sleep. Obesity, a family history of sleep apnea, and being male are three risk factors for sleep apnea, but anyone can experience it.
Sleep apnea and bruxism
Sleep apnea and bruxism are different conditions, but research indicates that people with sleep apnea have a higher risk of clenching their jaw.
If your night is interrupted by intense snoring or gasping, and the morning greets you with headaches or jaw pain, it’s likely that your sleep apnea is contributing to sleep-related bruxism.
Fortunately, researchers found that treating sleep apnea can reduce the symptoms of both sleep apnea and nighttime bruxism.
Night guards for sleep apnea
A night guard, sometimes referred to as a mouth guard, fits into your mouth and covers your teeth. When used as a sleep apnea treatment, a night guard holds your jaw in the just-right position to prevent those dangerous airway obstructions while you sleep.
If your sleep apnea contributes to sleep-related bruxism, your night guard keeps your top and bottom teeth separated while you sleep. In this way, getting a custom night guard improves your quality of sleep by treating obstructive sleep apnea and stopping jaw clenching.
Each night guard is custom made to ensure that your jaw stays in the right position.
If sleep apnea is keeping you from feeling refreshed each morning, don’t wait any longer to get a custom night guard. Call Dr. LaBombard at 512-668-9912 or schedule an appointment online.