Sleep Apnea FAQs
Is snoring normal?
Over half of the population snores to some degree, and in many cases, it’s just a harmless (if annoying) habit. However, if the snoring is significantly loud, frequent, or punctuated by pauses in breathing, that’s cause for concern. Don’t hesitate to fill out our sleep apnea quiz or contact our Weatherford, TX team today to start the process towards a concrete diagnosis.
What are the common signs of sleep apnea?
Common symptoms patients can look out for include:
- Loud, chronic snoring
- Daytime fatigue, no matter how many hours of sleep the patient had the night before
- Headaches in the morning or evening
- Dry throat in the morning
- Difficulties with memory and concentration
- Snorting, gasping, or moments of complete silence when sleeping (this indicates stops and starts in breathing; check with your bed partner to see if this sounds familiar).
Is sleep apnea dangerous?
If sleep apnea is left undiagnosed and untreated for too long, patients have a higher risk of experiencing dangerous health conditions. The lack of oxygen caused by sleep apnea forces the heart to work harder, increasing blood pressure and making the possibility of heart disease or a stroke more likely. Complications with medication and surgery are also common. In general, sleep apnea is dangerous simply for the negative effects it can have on your life. The constant fatigue, headaches, and problems with concentration can affect your work, education, and even relationships.
What is a CPAP?
A continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine can be used to treat moderate to severe cases of sleep apnea and help patients breathe more easily. It accomplishes this by continuously increasing air pressure in your throat so the airway doesn’t collapse. This pressure is transferred through a mask that covers the face and nose, just the nose, or prongs that fit in the nose.
What is Oral Appliance Therapy?
Oral appliance therapy is an alternative treatment for patients who suffer from sleep apnea, preferred by many over CPAP due to its easy use, effectiveness, and portability. Patients simply need to wear it while they’re sleeping, and the appliance slightly alters the position of their jaw so that the airway is clear and breathing is easy.
How do I know whether I need to use CPAP or an oral appliance?
Oral appliance therapy is typically the right choice in cases of mild to moderate sleep apnea, while a CPAP machine is preferred for severe cases. To achieve the most benefit, Dr. Romack often recommends combined therapy which utilizes both of these techniques.
How do I know what kind of oral appliance is right for me?
That’s our team’s job! Every oral appliance has its own unique benefits, and no one type is right for everyone. Dr. Romack works closely with you to determine the one that best fits your lifestyle, anatomy, and budget. Visit our oral appliance therapy page to learn more!
How do I take care of my oral appliance?
Make sure to brush it as thoroughly as you would your natural teeth. This should be done on both the inside and outer areas every morning. It’s also important to pay attention to signs of potential damage, so you can alert Dr. Romack as soon as possible.
Do I have to go to a sleep lab for a diagnosis?
You must be diagnosed by a physician, however – our team understands that having to spend the night in an unfamiliar place isn’t exactly ideal. That’s why many sleep physicians offer a home sleep testing monitor. This device collects all the important information about your condition for THE DOCTOR as you rest comfortably in your own bed.
Will my insurance cover my care?
In most cases, therapy for obstructive sleep apnea is covered by medical insurance. Dr. Romack is also a Medicare provider. Here in Weatherford, Dr. Romack and her team will be sure to work with your insurance company to maximize available benefits. In fact, we use advanced software that makes the process easier than ever. Visit our new patient information page to learn more.
What are the treatments for sleep apnea?
What are the dangers of sleep apnea?
What is an oral appliance?
What is sleep apnea?
Is there a surgical option for sleep apnea?