The Alaska Sleep Clinic estimates that 20 million Americans live with obstructive sleep apnea, a condition that causes the cessation of breathing while one sleeps. The most obvious primary symptoms of OSA are snoring and gasping for air in the middle of the night, though the condition causes several secondary symptoms that can negatively affect…
How a Sleep Dentist Can Create a Pleasant Dental Experience
Have you ever wished that a sleep dentist existed? Well, they do. As with many types of health procedures, not being awake or able to feel any pain is a major benefit for people that are afraid of pain or have anxiety when getting any work done on their teeth.
This is extremely common. In fact, around 25 million Americans report having some level of dental anxiety. This doesn't mean that everyone is too scared to have dental work performed but it does prevent many people from getting the procedures that are necessary for improving their overall health.
A sleep dentist can alleviate these fears by putting a patient to sleep while they are getting dental work performed. This way they do not feel anything and are completely unaware of what is happening. Oftentimes pain and fear will go hand in hand. When a patient is scared of what is happening their body can naturally tense up which makes things even more painful. This is why people that are relaxed tend to feel less pain and even recover faster after injuries.
Going to sleep can be particularly helpful when having major dental work performed like getting dental veneers or dental implants. Implants, for example, have a surgical component to the procedure where a metal post is implanted under the gums and secured to the jawbone. This can be uncomfortable and create anxiety in patients. Through the use of sedation dentistry, we can help patients relax and go to sleep while the metal posts are being implanted. By the time a patient wakes up the procedure will be complete.
There are several types of sedation that are commonly used. Laughing gas is used to simply calm the nerves and help a patient to relax and feel at ease during an appointment. Oral sedatives can accomplish the same goal. The challenge is that simply relaxing isn't enough to eliminate the pain so many people want this in combination with pain relief.
Local anesthesia can be used to numb the specific area that is being worked on. This is commonly done when a cavity is treated so that a patient won't feel pain from the procedure but the rest of the area is not numb, allowing patients to move and respond to commands without assistance.
Deep sedation can be achieved by delivering a stronger medication through an IV. This can help a patient to fall asleep during their dental procedure so that they do not feel anything and are unaware of their surroundings. Only expert dentists and oral surgeons can use this level of sedation because it requires additional training and the ability to monitor patients closely since, in this state, a patient is unable to move or respond to commands on their own. The benefit is that the procedure will be completely relaxing.
As a sleep dentist, we specialize in keeping our patients comfortable during oral surgery and can discuss the options for doing so in detail during a consultation.
A diagnosis of sleep apnea can be frightening or frustrating to patients, many of whom may need to make lifestyle changes in diet, exercise and environment to reverse the sleep disorder. In the face of such changes, many people may find it tempting to simply do nothing. However, left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to…
Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder that causes an involuntary cessation of breathing while you are asleep. The disorder also makes you feel tired even after a full night’s rest. There are three main types of sleep apnea: central, obstructive and complex.Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common form of the disorder and occurs when…
As sleep specialists, our Portland dental office can help you with snoring & sleep apnea. If this is something that you struggle with, it can be incredibly inconvenient. Snoring poses a problem since it can cause you to wake yourself up at night, preventing you from getting necessary rest. It can also cause problems with…