What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a medical condition in which a person pauses their breathing during sleep or takes shallow breaths all through the night. In the most common type of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, the airway is blocked. As a result, the patient snores as he or she struggles to breathe.
Central sleep apnea, the less common form, is an communication issue between the brain and muscles that control breathing. This causes patients to stop breathing entirely for brief periods during sleep.
Sleep apnea can have a broad range of affects that range from inconvenient to life-threatening. Most obviously, patients typically have a lower quality of sleep. Sleep deprivation affects mood and alertness, which can damage work, personal relationships, and other aspects of life.
The condition also effects the oxygen levels in the blood, increasing the risks of high blood pressure, heart failure, strokes, and heart attacks. The heartbeat may be affected, increasing the risk of developing arrhythmia, or irregular beating patterns.
Treating Sleep Apnea
There are a number of ways to treat sleep apnea. Lifestyle changes, surgical options, breathing devices, and dental devices may all be effective. Surgical options can be scary and expensive, so these are often a last resort. Breathing devices may be difficult for patients to get used to, loud, and annoying for a patients’ family members.
Dental devices are often the least intrusive option. These may fit like a mouth guard or go around the head to reposition the jaw. In some cases, pairing easy-to-use dental devices with lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, exercising regularly, and avoiding heavy meals before bedtime can be an inexpensive and effective way to treat sleep apnea.
The team at Eagle Harbor Dental can perform an intro-oral exam to determine if your quality of sleep could be improved with therapy. Please contact us for more information if you are experiencing a snoring or sleep apnea problem.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if I have sleep apnea?
A much more serious symptom is if your partner tells you that you periodically stop breathing during your sleep. If you have this symptom, contact us as soon as possible to schedule your appointment.
Would I be able to tell if I sometimes stop breathing in the middle of the night?
If you show signs of the other symptoms, try audio or video recording yourself overnight and check if you’re having these breathing episodes.
Does snoring mean that I have sleep apnea?
Are oral appliances for sleep apnea comfortable to wear?
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Meet Dr. Standish & Dr. Kelly
Dr. Standish has been serving Clay County patients at Eagle Harbor Dental for over 30 years. In 2013, his daughter, Dr. Kelly, joined the practice and they’ve been creating beautiful smiles together ever since. With extensive educations and memberships, our dentists are the best that Fleming Island has to offer.
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“I came to see Dr. Standish on the recommendation of my grandmother and mother. Dr. Standish also made me feel welcome and answered all my questions. Eagle Harbor Dental is truly our family's dental choice for all dental needs. P.S. They have the MOST comfortable dental chairs I have ever sat in!”
“From the Front Desk to the Dental Assistants - Eagle Harbor Dental is the epitome of what and how a dentist should be. The trust we feel for the staff and Dentist at this office are UNBELIEVABLE! We just wanted to THANK them in writing so our whole world knows JUST HOW GREAT THEY ARE!!”
“Been going to see Dr. Standish for many years. My teeth were a mess when I first started and now I have no issues. I'm 67 years old, I have all my own teeth, and I'm good to go for a long time. Never thought it would be that way. Along with the great dental care comes the great people that work there.”
“What makes Eagle Harbor Dental amazing is the people who are awesome at what they do. The staff that work there actually make me look forward to going to the dentist. I moved to a different county, but still make the drive.”
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“Dr. Standish is a remarkable Dentist and he has an incredible staff. He has a wonderful personality and his staff follow his example. His office is very high tech, but he likes to refer to himself as "an old school Dentist".”
“I am happy to have found Eagle Harbor Dental, and their great team. My first visit was to outline options for some dental work and they were very thorough in talking through options and next steps.”
“I had Dr. Standish recommended to me and I was immediately pleased with the recommendation, and the service received. Nice staff, lovely premises. treatments suggestions gone over thoroughly but nothing *pushed* on you. I definitely plan to continue coming here.”
“Been going there for ever. Even the people I have referred love them. They are friendly, professional and very knowledgeable about what they do. They have state of the art equipment which make procedures a breeze. Dr. Standish knows that I have had some work done.”
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