Can a Dentist Help Improve Sleep?

Getting a good night’s sleep has a big impact on your health. Many things can interrupt your sleep, however. Both snoring and sleep apnea are common issues that interrupt deep sleep. Did you know that your dentist can help you resolve these issues? To improve your sleep, you may need oral appliance therapy. Learn more about how your dentist can help you improve sleep and reduce snoring and sleep apnea.

Snoring

More than half the U.S. population snores at night, according to Sleep Foundation. However, snoring does not automatically mean that you suffer from sleep apnea. Intense snoring can cause various health issues though. It can lead to sleep disturbances, directly impacting the amount of sleep you get per night. Since the average human needs between seven and nine hours of sleep, it’s important to find a solution to snoring.

Ask your dentist for help to improve your snoring. With a brief exam, they can determine whether a snoring issue is tied to your oral health. Many people have snoring that is related to sleep apnea.

You may also have sleep apnea if you have any of these additional symptoms present:

  • You experience pauses in your snoring patterns
  • You choke or gasp while snoring
  • You are tired throughout the day because of a lack of sleep
  • You have headaches upon waking
  • You have a sore throat or dry mouth upon waking
  • You experience issues with paying attention
  • You can never stay asleep during the night
  • You wake up often to urinate
  • You have a decreased libido

Sleep Apnea

If you believe you suffer from snoring due to sleep apnea, your dentist can help. Dentists are specially trained to help patients with sleep apnea. Through oral appliance therapy, your sleep apnea can improve. There are a few different treatment options when it comes to sleep apnea.

Mandibular Advancement Device

This device resembles a mouth guard and is designed to open your airway during sleep.

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure Machine (CPAP)

This treatment option is for those with extreme cases of sleep apnea. This machine uses a mask and tube to deliver pressurized, oxygenated air to you during sleep.

Other oral appliances

Your doctor can help you find an oral appliance that is right for your level of sleep apnea. These oral appliances are portable devices that you can use at any time. They can help improve sleep by limiting snoring and increasing airflow to your lungs.

Your dentist can also help you make lifestyle changes that will help you sleep better at night. For example, your screen time, diet, and exercise routine can all impact your sleep. With the use of these tips and sleep apnea treatment, you can easily improve sleep.

Other Ways to Improve Sleep

There are many other ways that you can improve sleep. If you’re struggling with falling asleep, consider relaxation techniques like meditation or controlled breathing exercises. You can even keep a sleep journal to help your doctor identify any other sleep issues. Your best option is to speak with your doctor about your problems with sleep. They can offer detailed advice and solutions to help. Whether it’s just snoring or sleep apnea, contact your dentist today to improve sleep.

What are the First Signs of Gum Disease?

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, affects more people than you think and is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s an infection of the tissues that hold teeth in place. This can lead to bigger issues if not handled properly. If you suspect you have periodontal disease, you should speak to your dentist to find out what you can do to counteract it.

If you believe you are suffering from any of the below symptoms of gum disease, talk to your dentist at Flower Dental.

Bleeding or Tender Gums

While you may often spit out pink or red foam when brushing your teeth or visiting the dentist, bleeding gums is not a typical happening during tooth brushing. If you’re seeing blood when you brush your teeth, it can be one of the first signs of gum disease. Further, if you notice your gums feel tender, swollen, or irritated, that is typically a sign of infection.

Persistent Bad Breath

Bad breath affects us all, but if it’s persistent and noticeable, no matter what you do, it’s a sign that something is wrong. A bad taste in your mouth or bad breath is a side effect of bacteria in the mouth That’s the odor you smell. If brushing your teeth, flossing, or mouthwash doesn’t do away with your bad breath, it could be a sign you have an infection somewhere in your mouth. Periodontal disease is a more common source of persistent bad breath than other causes such as an infected tooth.

Loose Teeth

Once you reach a certain age, your teeth should not come loose. However, if you notice a tooth is loose or seems to have shifted places, it could be a sign of periodontal disease. This is because the gums hold the teeth in place. When they become infected, weakened, or recede, then teeth lose their stability and may come loose or be in danger of falling out. This may also present as deep pockets that have formed in between teeth as the gums wear away. You may not notice this in the mirror or at all until you bite down and something feels off or if you have mouthpieces, such as dentures, that no longer fit right.

If you believe you have periodontal disease, you should talk to your dentist. They’ll take a look and find out if your symptoms of tender gums, bleeding, tooth movement, or even jaw bone issues are linked to gum disease and not another cause. Your treatment will depend on what stage of the disease is discovered. The goal is to promote reattachment of the healthy gum tissue to your teeth which involves nonsurgical therapies for bacterial control or, in some extreme cases, surgery to restore gum that is too worn away.