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What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders, but due to its wide range of symptoms, it is often undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. This disorder causes patients to experience breathing cessation for ten or more seconds at a time during sleep. While many patients experience apnea and hypopnea (shallow breathing or cessation of breath for less than ten seconds), those diagnosed with sleep apnea can experience 100s of these apnea events each night. The cessation of breath causes the brain to trigger a panic response from the body to restart breathing. These repeated panic responses elevate blood pressure and cause you to waken. The elevated blood pressure and sleep deprivation that occurs when patients suffer from sleep apnea can lead to a number of health concerns. If you think you may be suffering from sleep apnea, the Weatherford dental Sleep Medicine team would be happy to help. Please call to find out more or schedule a sleep apnea consultation with our team.

Types of Apnea

Frustrated woman covering ears next to snoring man in bedThere are two main types of sleep apnea. Central sleep apnea (CSA) is the rarer of the two. It occurs when the brain fails to signal the body to breathe in and out during sleep. Patients suffering from CSA should seek treatment immediately as this form of sleep apnea can be extremely dangerous and can even lead to death without proper care. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is much more common. As is indicated by the name, OSA occurs when the airway is physically blocked during sleep.

Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea

Exhausted mom with crying childThe main reason sleep apnea is so often undiagnosed or misdiagnosed is that the warning signs are so varied. It’s very important that you contact the caring team at Weatherford Dental Sleep Medicine or a trusted local sleep clinic to receive an accurate diagnosis if you notice any of the following warning signs of sleep apnea:

Risk Factors for Sleep Apnea

Man sleeping with airway animation over profileIt’s especially important that you reach out to our office or a local sleep specialist if you fit into one of the demographics that are considered at risk. Patients who are at higher risk for sleep apnea include:


Dentist placing oral applianceIf we determine you are likely suffering from sleep apnea, the Weatherford Dental Sleep Medicine team offers at-home sleep studies. In the comfort of your own bed, these monitors collect data about the number and duration of sleep apnea events. We’ll evaluate the reports and help you create a personalized treatment plan to improve your sleep.

Sleep Apnea FAQs

man lying awake with sleep apnea

Are you dealing with sleep apnea? We understand you might have some lingering questions, and we're here to provide answers. Below, we've addressed some of the most frequently asked questions about sleep apnea in Weatherford. If you can't find the information you need here, don't worry. Simply reach out to us, and one of our friendly team members will gladly assist you.

Why Should I See a Dentist for Sleep Apnea Treatment?

You should consider seeing a dentist for sleep apnea treatment because dentists specialize in upper respiratory health. They can address obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) by repositioning the lower jaw to prevent airway obstruction caused by mouth and neck tissues. Moreover, routine dental checkups provide a convenient platform for discussing and addressing sleep-related issues, ensuring comprehensive care for your overall health.

Can I Diagnose Sleep Apnea on My Own?

No, you cannot diagnose sleep apnea on your own. While certain symptoms may suggest its presence, they don't confirm it. It's important to obtain an official diagnosis from a sleep doctor, as there are different types of sleep apnea that require specific treatment approaches. Although devices like Apple Watches can provide some data, they do not offer comprehensive sleep apnea testing. A sleep test administered by a qualified sleep doctor is the necessary step to accurately diagnose and determine the type of sleep apnea you may have.

Will Oral Appliance Therapy Make CPAP Therapy Unnecessary?

Oral appliance therapy can sometimes make CPAP therapy unnecessary, especially for patients with mild to moderate sleep apnea who find CPAP therapy uncomfortable and difficult to use. CPAP therapy involves wearing a mask that forcefully delivers air through the airways, and approximately 50 percent of prescribed CPAP users struggle with compliance.

However, it's essential to note that for individuals with severe sleep apnea, oral appliance therapy alone may not be as effective. The most appropriate treatment plan should be determined in consultation with both your sleep doctor and dentist. They will work together to assess your specific condition and find the right solution(s) tailored to your needs and comfort.

Will Sleep Apnea Go Away If I Lose Weight?

Losing weight can potentially improve or even resolve sleep apnea, especially if being overweight is a major contributing factor. Excess weight can lead to the blocking of the airway due to additional tissue. Shedding those extra pounds may reduce the tissue in the airway, alleviating the condition.

However, it's worth noting that even after significant weight loss, some people may continue to experience sleep apnea. To determine if the condition has improved or persisted, another sleep test would be necessary. It's important to work closely with healthcare professionals to monitor your progress and determine the most appropriate treatment plan based on your individual circumstances.

114 W Columbia St., Weatherford, TX 76086 USA
Deborah A. Romack, DDS Weatherford, TX dentist providing sleep apnea therapy. (817) 594-3806