Snoring Treatment & Devices in Lake Forest

Is there really an effective snoring treatment available to help you stop "sawing logs" every night when you doze off? It's time to find out. Getting your snoring under control could be good for your health. Often, persistent snoring is a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea which disrupts your ability to breathe while you are sleeping, making you wake up over and over again. This is a serious medical condition that can contribute to chronic fatigue and increase your risk of everything from diabetes to heart disease.

Even if you don't have apnea, you may snore with your mouth open. This can cause your mouth to dry out at night and lead to excessive plaque buildup and periodontitis (inflamed and receding gums). Eventually, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss. Because of this, snoring can be considered an oral health problem. In fact, your dentist may be the first one to spot the warning signs. Below are some of the treatments your dental provider may recommend that you explore.

Home Snoring Treatments

Here are a few of the many low cost and no-cost therapies you can try at home:

  • Sleep on your side instead of your back
  • Elevate the head of your bed a few inches
  • Avoid alcohol and other muscle-relaxing substances before bed
  • Treat nasal congestion or use nasal strips (if you are a "nose snorer")

Dental Snoring Treatment

If snoring is caused by airway obstruction, a dental device may provide substantial improvement. There are many different appliances available. Some work by pushing your lower jaw slightly downward and forward so it juts out a little and keeps your throat open. Others hold your tongue in place with a splint so it doesn't block or narrow your airway. These devices aren't as uncomfortable as they sound. In fact, most patients adjust well to using them within a short period of time.

Seek a dentist (such as an orthodontist) who specializes in fitting oral appliances for this snoring treatment. You will be wearing this device every night, so it needs to be comfortable. This is a very good reason to choose a custom fitted appliance rather than something sold on late night TV. It may take several adjustment sessions to get everything just right. You should get regular checkups to ensure the device remains in good condition and still fits properly over time.

Medical Snoring Treatments

If you have snoring caused by moderate to severe sleep apnea, the treatment of choice may be a CPAP mask. This is a continuous positive airway pressure device that is worn over the nose during sleep. It blows a steady stream of air that holds your airway open and ensures you don't stop breathing (or start snoring). Of course, you have to wear it every night for it to deliver the desired benefits. If you can't tolerate the CPAP or if it doesn't seem to help, a dental device may be a viable alternative.

Surgical Snoring Treatments

If you are not helped by other snoring treatments, you may wish to consult with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. There are many different dental surgeries that may help reduce snoring. One available surgery involves permanently shifting the upper and lower jawbones forward. It is highly effective but can have a substantial recovery period. Most of the less invasive procedures require tightening up the soft palate and removing the uvula. This reduces the soft tissues that may vibrate or relax backward to block the airway. Some of these procedures are fairly new, so be sure to research the risks and benefits of the specific procedure your surgeon recommends.

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