Sleep Apnea & Dental Laser Treatment

Loud snoring during the night and sore jaw muscles, especially when accompanied by sleepiness or fatigue during the daytime, could be a sign you are experiencing sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a common but a serious sleeping disorder that impacts breathing as well as your dental health. 

So why does your jaw feel sore after waking up? 

If you find yourself waking up in the morning with sore jaw muscles, it could be because you are grinding or clenching down on your teeth whilst you’re asleep. This sleep condition is also known as Bruxism. For some people, teeth grinding can be linked to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) as well which can be treated with out dental laser machine. A patient suffering from sleep apnea often wakes up during the night as their respiratory system shuts down intermittently, disturbing their breathing patterns which often leads to teeth grinding. 

Though they may feel more tired throughout the day,  a person who suffers from this condition might not otherwise realise it’s occuring because they are unconscious. 

Common Symptoms 

  • Frequent and loud snoring 
  • Choking, gasping or snorting during sleep 
  • Daytime sleepiness and fatigue

Other Symptoms 

  • Waking up with a sore throat or dry mouth 
  • Morning headaches
  • Insomnia, restless sleep, or nighttime awakenings 

How is Bruxism Diagnosed? 

Whilst it is quite possible that you may not know that you’re grinding your teeth at night,, your dentist is able to detect any changes in your dental health during your oral examination. Generally, for people who suffer from Bruxism, the surfaces of their teeth are eroded or loose, and in some cases even cracked.

What is the Best Treatment? 

Firstly, you can eliminate bruxism and sleep apnea by improving your sleep quality. And most of these symptoms can be alleviated through simple lifestyle such as: 

  1. Managing stress levels 
  2. Losing weight and maintaining a healthy diet
  3. Daily exercise 
  4. Reducing alcohol 
  5. Quitting smoking 
  6. Adjusting your sleeping position 
  7. Limiting caffeine intake 

Keeping in mind treatment for Bruxism differs from case to case, the treatment required depends on the underlying cause. For example, if you still grind your teeth after these lifestyle changes have been made, it is possible in some cases, medication or even surgery will be necessary. For some patients,  a custom oral appliance is made to reposition your tongue or jaw whilst you sleep in order to keep your airway open. 

If you have any of these symptoms, please do not ignore them; give us a call immediately. Why, you may ask? If Bruxism is left untreated, it may damage your teeth, contribute to periodontal tissues, or you may experience persistent jaw pain. 

The good news is sleep apnea is now treatable for many patients using  our quick and easy dental laser machine offered at our Runaway Bay clinic. Over the years, we have had countless patients who have undergone dental laser treatment for their sleep apnea and have experienced great success with this treatment. 

Research has shown it can reduce and attenuate snoring, and provides an effective, non-invasive way to lessen the effects of sleep apnea. As with any treatment, there are potential risks with laser treatment. However, the risks are minimal and certainly less than alternative therapies. 

So you might be wondering: How Can Dental Laser Treament Positively Impact Sleep Apnea? 

Our dental laser treatment is a revolutionary walk-in, walk-out snoring treatment that users moderate laser energy to tighten soft tissue in the throat. This improves the airway volume and reduces snoring and sleep apnoea. Laser wavelengths are used to stimulate the tissues using a photothermal effect which triggers protein transformation in the collagen fibres. This causes the tissues to tighten, creating more space in the throat for breathing. 

Patients are typically surprised at how painless our dental laser procedure is for sleep apnea (not to mention the various other treatments available) . What’s more surprosing is no anaesthetic is required.  Patients can talk, eat and drink normally once the procedure is over. 

For the treatment to be as effective as possible, dental laser is offered in a course of several treatments, generally over seven weeks with a recommended annual maintenance appointment.

For more information about dental laser as a snoring treatment, please call 07 55 379 182 or get in touch with our team at Coolangatta Dental Group today!